Shingle Cracking and Splitting: What’s the Difference?

The terms “cracking” and “splitting” are often used interchangeably when describing damage to asphalt shingles. However, these are actually two different things. In today’s post, local roofing company Mass-Tech Roofing and Building Co.​ explains the differences between cracking and splitting.

Shingle Cracking And Splitting Whats The Difference

Cracking vs. Splitting

Splitting is a type of damage that causes the shingles to completely divide into two or more pieces. While both cracked and split asphalt shingles will need to be replaced, the extent and cost of the repair work will be different. 

What Causes Asphalt Shingles to Crack or Split?

Most asphalt shingles today are made with a flexible fiberglass backing, which means they’re less vulnerable to cracking or splitting, compared to traditional or “organic” asphalt shingles that are made of cellulose from recycled paper. There are, however, certain conditions that can cause cracking and splitting. In extreme cases, the following conditions may lead to an unplanned roof replacement.

High winds — Shingled roofs are made of rows of material with edges that would allow wind lift, resulting in folded or torn shingles. You can tell if your roof has suffered wind lift if there are creases on the shingles just below the edge of the shingles above. One of the reasons to invest in complete roofing systems installed by certified roofers — as opposed to taking the DIY route or buying shingles on your own — is that you get features like reinforcing adhesives that protect the roof from wind lift.

Thermal expansion — All kinds of substances expand and contract when exposed to changes in temperature. Installations made of multiple pieces like concreted slabs and asphalt shingles need to be installed with gaps between them. This allows room for thermal expansion. Without these gaps, the shingles will exert pressure on each other as they expand, causing cracking. Working with an experienced roofer can help prevent such problems. To make sure you aren’t liable for installation errors, you’ll want to make sure that your roofing warranty includes coverage for workmanship.

Mass-Tech Roofing and Building Co.​ is the leading roofer serving Plymouth and the surrounding communities. Give us a call at (781) 826-7663. You can also fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment.

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