6 common causes of discolored roof shingles

Roofs are the ultimate heroes when it comes to being exposed to the elements, and that can leave them faded, stained, or discolored. Professional roofing contractors are the best place to turn for the answer to why your roof’s shingles are discolored. 

Contact a local roofing contractor and schedule an inspection whenever you notice something doesn’t look quite right with your roof or gutter system.

6 Reasons For Stained Or Discolored Roof Shingles

In the meantime, here are six of the most common reasons roof shingles become faded, stained, or discolored.

Cheap roofing materials

Cheap roofing materials are more prone to fading and discoloration than higher-quality counterparts. The same weaknesses or shortcuts leading to color instability also affect roof performance. You undoubtedly get what you pay for with roof construction, and shingles are no exception

The next time you’re getting bids to replace an outdated roof, make sure to compare apples to apples when choosing your contractor or the materials. While you don’t necessarily need to select the most expensive options, we can guarantee the cheapest options are rarely the best way to go when it comes to the roof’s durability and longevity.

The roof is old and needs to be replaced

The average, well-maintained shingle roof has a lifetime of 20 to 25 years. That said, insurance companies typically require a professional inspection of any roof that’s 20 years old or older. Then, depending on the results, they may raise premium rates or refuse to insure roofs that exceed their life expectancy or when the inspection report indicates repairs or replacement are necessary

Faded or discolored shingles may be a sign of age and potentially indicate replacement is needed.

Moss or algae growth

Moss and algae may look charming, but they’re bad news for any roof that isn’t intentionally designed to be planted! The bay area is full of roofs with green, brown, red, and black discoloration caused by moss, algae, and different type of molds. These plants and organisms thrive in moist conditions with the right combination of sun and shade and plenty of organic materials to eat (like roofing materials).

A good roof cleaning should do the trick. In most cases, the presence of moss or algae means the roof is a slick surface danger zone. It’s best to have professionals do the job.

Discolored roof shingles caused by rust 

Many essential parts of roofing systems are made from metal. Examples include flashing, drip edges, rake edges, ridge vents, gutters, and downspouts. In addition, some roofs may have additional metal mounted or installed on top of them, such as the seals on skylights, chimney or stove pipe parts, attic vents, or HVAC equipment.

While these metal parts are coated with water-resistant materials, they can eventually rust, chip, or become compromised, leading to rusting. Over time, rust stains form as water-infused rust drips down the shingles. Surface stains can be cleaned from roof surfaces, but any corroded or worn out metal parts require immediate replacement to prevent further damage.

Tree debris

Debris from trees also causes discoloration or staining if left too long on the roof. If tree branches hang over any portion of the roof, discoloration may also result from bird or animal droppings that accumulate and stain roofing materials. 

This is another reason we recommend scheduling regular roof inspections and maintenance. While we’re taking a look at the roof from the ridge vent to the downspout, we also clear it of any debris to minimize the chance of rot or discoloration. Any staining due to organic matter that hasn’t compromised roofing materials can be cleaned with a pressure washer.

You repainted your house

Sometimes the shingles are just fine, but your new house color makes them appear different than they used to. It’s amazing how shingle colors shift when placed next to different exterior paint and trim colors. If your roof is 15 years or younger, odds are you’ll just need to wait it out. If you have an older roof and are considering a replacement, now’s a great time to speak to your roofing contractor about future shingle color options

Pacific Coast Roofing Knows Why You Have Discolored Shingles

Would you like a professional opinion about why your roof’s shingles look faded, discolored, or stained? Contact Pacific Coast Roofing and find out once and for all. Discolored shingles may indicate necessary repairs that grow more expensive every month you wait, so don’t put it off. We’ll let you know exactly where your roof stands. Then, we’ll help you create a maintenance plan to reduce the risk of shingle stains or discoloration in the future.