Best Ways to Keep Birds off Your Roof

While many may scoff at the notion, having birds on your roof is, in fact, harmful for it, not least because of the droppings and other debris and contaminants which tend to follow such behavior. So, you should definitely be invested in learning about the best ways to keep birds off your roof!

Go ultrasonic

Now, if you are looking for sound-based ways to keep birds off your roof, then just blasting your speakers often works. However, this would be a surefire way to get in trouble with your neighbors! A much better solution, one which would not even require the services of a roofing professional, would be to get an ultrasonic repellent device. It is, to human ears, completely silent. And these repellent devices are made in versions especially for birds, too. This means that there would be absolutely no disruptions to the daily life of you, your neighbors, or your pets. Unless you own a bird, of course. Perhaps the best thing about them is that you can just leave them turned on in your attic. They will continue working while consuming very little extra electricity without any maintenance required.

Scare the birds off

Another way to keep birds off your roof would be to install “predators” on the roof. In other words, mannequins of prey birds which work as a deterrent against more common birds that tend to perch on top of your roof. The trick here is whether you would be OK with such a decoration on your roof. And, of course, the deterrent’s installation, maintenance, and effectiveness. Owl, raven, and falcon decoys are the most commonly used versions, and they all tend to be effective against different birds. Ravens scare off most small birds; owls intimidate sparrows, crows, and pigeons, and falcons typically work against pigeons, turtle doves, and various songbirds. So, you will need to carefully select the prey bird or birds you want on top of your roof. There are some less common versions of the mannequin, too, with their own niche.

An owl, one of the best ways to keep birds off your roof
Having a decorative owl on your roof can look adorable and is one of the best ways to keep birds off your roof

Make your roof uncomfortable

Another way to keep birds off your roof is by stopping them from perching on it comfortably. You have several viable options to choose from, and all of them are pretty effective at both preventing perching and preventing birds from nesting on roofs so as to prevent problems in the future as well. 

  • The spider—Contrary to the name, you wouldn’t be installing an actual spider onto your roof. This device is made of a series of long, flexible rods. They effortlessly sway in the wind and cover the area where birds typically perch. It makes it hard for them to land and nudges and strikes them when they do
  • Roof spikes—In spite of the horrific name, this is just a series of small, thin rods. They prevent birds from comfortably perching on a surface
  • Electric pads—Like an electric fence, this is the most effective yet cruelest and riskiest approach

Start up a roof garden

More modern approaches to roof decoration and upkeep make it possible to have baskets of flowers or other plants on them. This makes your roof overheat less, helping temperature control in your home and protecting it from heavy rainfall. It is also one of the best ways to keep birds off your roof. Now, this particular piece of advice might seem contradictory at first. After all, a garden is likely even to seem appealing to some birds. However, the trick lies in what you do with the plants. You need to spray your plants with methyl anthranilate. This is a solution that smells and tastes very unpleasant to birds, eliminating both a potential food source and driving them away. Of course, while it is not as dire as the biggest risks of DIY roof repair, installing the plants is still potentially dangerous, so contact professionals.

Clean up your roof regularly

Now, as the experts on bird control from like to point out, while most humane methods of driving birds away keep them from perching on the roof itself, this isn’t always effective and does little for your gutters. This is where some species of birds like to nest. Meaning you still need a bit of maintenance. First, so you can catch those birds who are immune to your methods of driving them away. You may also need to take down a nest or two on occasion while doing this. Second, to actually keep the tools you use as ways to keep birds off your roof in good condition and functional. This will be even more important if you decide to go with electric pads. If debris gets caught on them, even the low voltage can produce sparking and potentially start a fire through prolonged contact.

A blue and orange bird on a roof
While some birds look stunning, they should still not be allowed to nest on your roof.

Make sure there are no temptations

The final way to keep birds off your roof is to make sure there’s nothing that attracts them to it in the first place. Part of this comes down to the material and make of your roof, which is perfect if you are in the process of renovating or replacing it. For example, the effectiveness of a metal roof for your home also shows when its temperature dissuades birds from landing on it during summer. However, paying attention to your attic, balconies, and yard is also smart. Birds tend to congregate around places where they can consistently get food. So, if you leave leftovers on your balcony or in your yard, they will hang around when they can get at them. Similarly, smells coming from your attic can attract them to your roof.

 A cat on a wall
Pet cats also typically make most birds too uncomfortable to stick around.

A final word on ways to keep birds off your roof

Now that you are familiar with the best ways to keep birds off your roof, you can start putting them into play. It all really comes down to what you’re comfortable with having on your roof and what you can get safely installed. Some methods on our list require more maintenance than others, so keep that in mind too!


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