Your roof provides crucial protection for your home. It withstands a variety of elements on a daily basis. And occasionally, your roof has to stand up against extreme weather conditions like storms and snow.

roof damage

To ensure that your roof can continue to deliver excellent performance for several years, proper maintenance is needed. Among the elements that could be damaging to your roof is debris. Different types of debris may end up on your roof and accumulate over time if you don’t clean your roof regularly. Some of the most common types are tree debris, leaves and branches.

In this article, residential roofing expert De Palma Construction discusses the most damaging types of debris to your roofing. We also share tips on how you can prevent or minimize the risk of such damage.

Worst Types of Debris That Can Damage Your Roof

Roofs are exposed to various types of debris every day, but the following are often the most damaging, according to some roofing professionals:

Tree Branches

Tree branches create the most hazard during storms or strong winds. Strong winds particularly are sometimes capable of tearing tree branches or even the entire trees away, causing these objects to drop on your roof, puncture your roof’s protective membrane or tear the shingles off. These kinds of damage can easily compromise your roofing. And when left unaddressed, they can eventually lead to the quick deterioration or failure of your roof system.

That said, make sure to have your roof inspected by a professional after severe weather events. Apart from checking for major damage, they can also look for other minor issues potentially caused by the recent storm.

Nevertheless, make sure not to put your guard down on regular days when the weather is fine because healthy trees may also cause damage to your roofing. Trees that are close to your home, with branches hanging over your roof, can pose risks to your shingles. Leaves and other tree debris could easily find their way on your gutters and roofing. Furthermore, strong winds may cause these trees to bend and whip across your roof, creating friction that could damage or tear off your shingles. Make sure to keep trees away from your home. And if that is no longer possible, you should have the branches trimmed regularly so that they won’t hang over your roof and potentially cause damage.


You can only do so much to prepare your home against hailstorms because their effect on your roofing will largely depend on the size of the hailstones and the speed at which they have impacted your roof. Heavy hail may not necessarily rip off your shingles. However, it can cause your shingles to crack and the protective granules to wear down or shed excessively. Ultimately, these could shorten the life span of your roofing.

Additionally, in some cases, hail can even puncture the lining underneath your shingles without showing any visible signs of damage. Most likely, you will only find out about this damage after a leak has already developed in your roofing. To avoid bigger roofing problems in the future, keep a close watch on your roof after a hailstorm. Look out for any new signs of wear and tear, and carry out a roof repair immediately.

Building Components

Building components are mostly a threat to your roofing during high winds or other serious weather events like hurricanes and tornadoes. These elements can tear off actual pieces of your home or other homes around you, which could possibly be blown onto your roof and other exterior parts of your home. Some of the objects that commonly break off and get blown away during extreme weather events are antennas, shutters, fencing, posts, roof vents, nails, glass, shingles, lawn chairs and bits of masonry. When these things make their way towards your roof, they can be dangerous and damaging — especially if they are thrown at high speeds. It can be difficult to prevent your roof from getting damaged by flying objects during a storm. The best that you can do is to call a roofer as soon as possible so that they can inspect your rooftop. 

What Else Can Be Done to Prevent Roof Damage Caused by Debris?

It may not be possible to stop debris from landing on your roof, but there are a few effective ways to help you prevent damage that could potentially be caused by debris. Regular roof maintenance and cleaning are, of course, your best weapon against debris. But these two things are also essential to keep your roof safe and protected:

Gutter Cleaning

Gutters can easily fill up with debris if you fail to clean them regularly. When this happens, your gutters could get clogged and water could overflow on the sides of your home, potentially causing damage to your siding and home’s foundation. During winter, clogged gutters could also harbor ice dams and cause moisture to back up onto your roofing. To avoid such problems, see to it that your gutters are cleaned on a regular basis. You may also choose to install gutter guards so that dirt and debris won’t be able to enter your gutter system.

Roof Inspections

You should also invest in regular roof inspections as these will give you the chance to detect problems early and ensure your roof is not at risk of extensive damage. Roof inspection typically goes hand in hand with roof maintenance, so make sure to schedule regular inspections as well.

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De Palma Construction is a trusted company established in 1999. We offer a range of residential and commercial roofing services as well as siding and gutter installation. Our team is composed of trained and experienced professionals who work hard to deliver excellent results and customer satisfaction. Additionally, we only use quality materials that can last for several years and provide you with the best bang for your buck. To learn more about our services, call us at (717) 638-1131 or fill out our contact form.