Part One by Ron Williams
Often we find broken tiles on a roof. Most people do not understand how to walk on a tile roof and sometimes it is apparent that the tiles were broken by foot traffic.
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Other times there is not a readily apparent explanation and the homeowner may say something like: "I swear, no one has been on my roof, how could there be broken tiles"?
Roof tiles can get damaged or be lifted by the wind (poorly fixed ridge tiles are especially susceptible to wind damage) or roof expansion movement as the roof heats up and cools down. So, on a daily basis your roof does absorb a lot of natural abuse expanding and contracting. As a roof expands and contracts the roof system moves, and during movement the tiles bind against each other. Quite often I go on a tile roof and see fifty or more "corner chips" these are caused primarily from this type of movement.
Another killer is moss. Shaded areas are perfect breading grounds for moss to grow. The moss will first cause several hairline cracks along the thin overlapping sections of the Tile.
The Northern facing surfaces of roofing generally get the least amount of the sun and in turn will take longer for moisture or dew to evaporate or run off. The steeper the roof pitch, the more moss will grow. Moss creates an additional problem with its root system by compounding the deterioration process further causing the tile to pit and crack.
Eventually, your roof will just leak and most likely cause damage inside of your home until its repaired or replaced.
If you really consider that you may have the equivalent weight of several Semi-Trucks parked on your roof. Any problems with your roof would be a serious matter.