While most people think hail and storms are the only things that can damage their roofing, you may be surprised to learn that squirrels can also create a host of problems. The multiple troubles squirrels can cause decrease your property value and create the need for costly roof repairs. And if you procrastinate fixing their damage, more problems will occur.
When it comes to your home’s roofing, squirrels can be one of the most pesky rodents. Squirrels’ teeth constantly grow, and they chew on hard materials on and around homes. And not many surfaces can withstand a squirrel’s bite. They gnaw through wood, polyethylene, roof shingles, and lead sheathing.
Squirrels can literally eat away your siding, roof shingles, and your trim. When these major components of your home’s protection become compromised, your biggest investment becomes vulnerable to moisture damage. Surprisingly, even bird feeders can attract squirrels to feast on and around your home.
Can Squirrels Cause Damage to Your Roof?
Yes. Squirrels can peel up your shingles, chew their way through your roof decking, and enter your attic. If you install a drip edge—which is also called a drip cap—it will deter this problem from occurring. A drip edge is a piece of metal that slides under your first row of shingles and hangs over your fascia’s edge, and it will not only help water drain into your gutters and be channeled away from your home, but also help prevent squirrel damage. A drip edge makes it harder for a squirrel to tunnel between your roof shingles and fascia.
Why do squirrels target your home and roof?
Squirrels enter your home because they are looking for warmth and shelter. They like to gnaw constantly on edible and non-edible things: nuts, tree buds, seeds, and more! They invade your home looking for something to chew on to keep their teeth sharp. In the attic, this may mean electrical wires. As a result, home fires can be caused by squirrels, so identifying signs of squirrels on your roof or in your attic is important for your overall safety and the safety of your home.
They use leaves and debris from the outdoors along with the insulation in your attic to build their nests. So, keep an eye out for ruffled insulation, and items from nature in your attic.
Squirrels get into your home through any existing gaps in your soffit or fascia. If your siding is compromised, they can enter at the weakest point. If your ridge vent is open or your chimney uncapped, these unwanted critters can get into your home through these vulnerable access points.
What type of damage can squirrels do to other parts of your home?
- Attic—Once squirrels get inside your home, they chew on electrical wiring and insulation, and they may even get inside your living space and wreak havoc.
- Gutters—When squirrels leap onto your roof carrying pinecones and nuts, what they are holding may be dropped, roll down to your gutters and clog them, causing water to overflow your gutters and pool at the base of your foundation.
Signs Your Roof Damage Was Caused by Squirrels
- Vent pipes are chewed up, and plumbing becomes damaged as a result.
- The pungent smell of squirrel urine is not only potent in your attic, but it also comes through your walls into your rooms, and circulates into your home through your heating vents.
- There are tears in the insulation in your attic.
- You find wet spots in your attic.
- You hear unusual noises (squirrels make loud scampering noises early in the morning and at dusk).
- Unsightly urine stains are visible on your ceilings.
- You have clogged gutters due to squirrels scampering about your roof and dropping things.
- There is water pooling around your home’s perimeter.
- There are noticeable squirrel droppings in your attic—which are bacteria ridden and should be removed by a pro pest service.
- You find acorns in your attic or gutters because squirrels are storing them.
How to Prevent Squirrel Damage to Your Roof
Thwarting squirrel damage is far less expensive than dealing with their relentless attack. Here’s how: Trim your trees as far away from your home as possible to decrease squirrel access to your roof. Then, apply a repellent to your roof shingles, siding, and vents to keep squirrels from chewing on them.
We Repair Roof Damage Caused by Squirrels
Each spring and fall, and after major storms, grab some binoculars, and from the safety of the ground, inspect your roof shingles for any damage. If you spot broken, cracked, or missing roof shingles, contact American Way Exteriors for your needed roof repairs to avoid further problems. If you leave roof trouble unaddressed, squirrels may get into your attic as a result.
If your roof is beat-up due to squirrels, get rid of the pests with the help of a pest control company. Next, address their access point to your home, and have it repaired to keep squirrels from reentering your abode. Your insurance company may cover some of the damage incurred by squirrels, so contact them promptly and have them schedule an inspection.
At American Way Exteriors, as a local, trusted roofing company, we repair the roof damage caused by squirrels and replace your roofing as needed to safeguard your home from any additional problems. We work with your insurance company and offer timely residential roof repair.