November 1, 2021
A roof inspection can be a great way to catch problems early on (otherwise known as a way for homeowners to save money). However, not everyone knows what exactly a roof inspector will look for and thus might have a hard time determining whether the service is really worth it.
At Diversified Roofing, our staff knows how important it is for our clients to be informed before they make their decisions, so we bring you more information about how an inspection keeps your home protected.
The most obvious reason for hiring a roof inspector is because you don’t have the same visibility of your roof that you have in other parts of your home. As with many other major defects, roof damage can sometimes take years to make itself known. It’s how countless homeowners end with expensive bills that they were in no way prepared for.
If you’re thinking of taking the burden onto your shoulders though, it’s worth giving you a few caveats. DIY inspections carry a number of safety concerns, particularly if you’re not used to being that high up on a ladder. And while drones provide a safer option, they can’t photograph the underside of your shingles, where some of the worst damage can occur.
A roof inspector isn’t just checking out the major flaws. Anyone can spot a huge hole at the top of a gable or whether two seams have split apart. They’re up there to not only spot the minor infractions but also to find out the root cause of whatever they happen to find.
Your roof is built to withstand moisture, but ideally, it’s supposed to run off as quickly as it pours on. Anything from frost to clogged gutters can ultimately leave your roof vulnerable against the elements. Water that seeps in doesn’t just weaken the structural integrity, it can also lead to other inconveniences. If the roofing professional does find evidence of water damage, they’ll look for the cause of it as well.
Water damage can certainly cause damaged shingles, but they can also be loose or missing due to major storms, old age, or too much tree cover. An inspector will not only decide whether you need a patch-up here or there, they’ll also assess how the damage occurred so they can identify troublesome patterns. For instance, if there’s a portion of the roof that is worn due to too much friction from tree branches.
If you have a metal roof, there will be some degree of shifting over time based on weather conditions. While this is normal, prolonged movement can lead to separating seams and loosened screws. Even small gaps can lead to major buildups of condensation, which can have a big effect on how long the structure will last.
If the flashing of the roof is starting to pull apart, the effects are similar to that of loose seams. Rust, missing pieces, dents, and holes can all be signs of worn flashing, which can lead to anything from corrosion to leaks in the home. If the material has been compromised in any way, a good roof inspector will be able to tell you whether it’s natural wear and tear or not.
It’s not just your roof that’s affected by roof damage. Even the smallest of leaks can affect the walls and ceilings, which is why a roof inspector will check for stains, rot, and other damage inside as well. This can be a great way to keep water damage from impacting the rest of the home.
Unfortunately, not all roofing specialists are as expert as they claim to be. A roof inspector will look for any mistakes made during the installation or maintenance process and to what extent they’re causing ripple effects on the rest of the structure. (And if they happen to find the mistake of a DIY homeowner, a good inspector will break the news as gently as possible.)
The age of your roof will affect the answer to this question somewhat, but the recommendation is to have it inspected once a year. Your roof is a critical part of your home and if you’ve ever had to replace or repair it, a major investment on your part. There’s no benefit to waiting until the day when you have to start putting buckets around the house to catch rain.
Besides signs of water damage on the interior of the home (e.g., stains, etc.), you should also be aware of drafts. While wind in and of itself isn’t a sign of roof damage, as it could be caused by poor ventilation or air circulation, it could also signify a problem with the roof. Heading up to the attic or sticking a hand into a crawl space on a windy day can give you a better idea of where the source is coming from.
If you’re in no need of roof repair, a roofing inspector may present you with a roof inspection certification. This designation can typically only be given by a licensed contractor and is typically good for a year or longer, depending on the type of certificate and roof in question. These can be real assets if you’re planning to sell your home anytime in the near future as it’s physical proof that the next buyers are unlikely to run into problems anytime soon.
Major roof repairs are sometimes unavoidable, but an inspection does have the power to ward off much bigger jobs. Replacing a shingle or repairing a seam may be a nuisance, but they’re much easier than having to redo a portion of your roof or replace it altogether.
Diversified Roofing knows not only the areas we serve, but also the people who need our services. No matter what kind of roof you have and what kind of services you need, we’re here to collaborate with you and provide an expert opinion when you need it the most. If you’re in the Phoenix or Houston area and have questions about your roof, we’re here to get to the bottom of it.