‘I’d tell you a joke about a roof, but it’s over your head’!
Whether you’re buying, selling, or redesigning a home that you already own, knowing the condition of the roof is essential. Apart from the foundations, your roof is a necessary element of your home. After all, it is the first line of protection against storms and extreme weather.
And when we visit our physicians from time to time as a protective measure, so do roof checks.
Roof checks are an important aspect of assessing the safety of a home and can ensure there are no secret defects that may turn into larger ones at a later stage. As the saying goes, ‘the early bird catches the worm!’
Here’s what you need to know about roof inspections.
Why Should I Have Roof Inspections?
The goal of roof inspection may be multi-layer, from early identification to the elimination of roofing issues to the detection of structural defects. Here are some of the reasons why the inspection of the roof is important.
Roofs could have undesired structural issues that may turn into something more significant at a later point. In the worst case, the roof could also come crashing down, leading to a life-threatening disaster.
A thorough inspection of the roof by a qualified roofing company can help to prevent such accidents.
Moss or Mold
Mold and moss are popular in houses located in wetlands. If you live in a hot and humid climate, the risk for mould and mold development is possible. According to the Center for Disease Control, this may lead to a plethora of allergic reactions.
However, routine roof inspections can prevent this from occurring.
Roofs, particularly in colder areas, are protected by insulation from the cold outside weather.
A roof’s insulation helps control the internal ambiance of a home. If your insulation is damaged, it will affect the internal temperature of a house.
When Should I Inspect My Roof?
The question is when to schedule roof inspections? Setting a specific number for when it is more advisable to have a roof inspected depends on various factors, including the roof’s materials and what weather conditions the roof is exposed to.
The roof itself is the key influencing factor in the regularity of planned roof maintenance. Over time, various styles of roofing materials can decay differently.
They are popular and are the most widely used roofing material in the United States. But you can also find shakes or shingles, and tiled roofs are becoming increasingly common.
The general recommendation is that asphalt shingle and composite roofs need inspection roughly every three or four years. The same refers to the top of the wooden shingle. A tile roof only needs to be assessed every five years.
However, even though the outer roof material may not need an inspection, the other roof elements, such as underlay and structural components, should be checked at shorter intervals.
Exposure to Weather Condition
After a major weather event (like a hailstorm), most homeowners recognize the need to do a thorough overall roof inspection to determine whether their roof sustained any damage. However, this shouldn’t be the only time to do a roof inspection.
Perhaps the most critical time of the year for the roof to be tested in the fall before the winter chill hits. Timing is important to us. For example, in shingle roofs, freezing weather will jeopardise efficient construction or repair, since new shingles cannot be properly sealed in the cold.
In comparison, repairs on an ice roof can be, to say the least, risky. Therefore, if you check the roof too late in the season, you can just do such repairs early in the spring.
That being said, an annual inspection of the roof will be the safest way to go. Don’t care about the value of this annual check for your house.
DIY Inspections vs. Professional Inspections
The question is, do you hire someone to inspect your roof or, should you do it yourself? The answer is both but at different levels.
Periodic inspection of your roof allows you to get to know the building aspects so that you can fully understand the problems before they get out of hand.
Here is a generalized list of things you should look for:
- Piles of leaves, tree branches, and other foreign materials
- Look for moss, lichen, or algae
- Loose or old gutters
- Broken or missing shingles
- Cracked caulk or sealant
- Cracked chimneys and vent pipes
- Moisture issues in your attic and rafters
You may want to inspect the roof further using a ladder after walking around your home. However, this may be risky if you have a family home with two or more stories and could cause severe injuries if an accident should occur.
That is where a professional roof inspector would be valuable.
Many homeowners only take the problems of roofing seriously when the leaks are visible, and brown stains appear on the walls and ceilings. By then, I’m sure it may be too late. You might end up in need of substantial renovations, if not a brand new roof.
While there is a lot of content available online about how to do a roof inspection, nothing beats the expertise and understanding of the experts who have worked on roofing for their whole career.
A professional roofing inspector is trained to detect concealed leaks and other problems often unnoticed by the untrained eye. They will provide a full detailed report with details of issues noticed and what work should be done to rectify them.
A professional roofing inspector will provide the following during their inspection.
Full Interior Inspection
The first thing a roofer does is check the inside of the building for signs of water leaks. They can also search for signs of old insulation, mould, moss, and moisture. They will also inspect the holes on the inside of the structure, check the chinks of light coming in from outside.
If you do not have any insulation, it is advised that you add it to avoid the lack of heat from inside and cold from outside.
Full Exterior Inspection
The next step for the roofing inspector is to check your roof’s exterior for any signs of damage. They will do a comprehensive inspection and document issues such as missing, loose, and cracked tiles and leaks.
After that, he will advise you on the state of the roof and recommend repair work.
Once he has completed his roof inspection, the roofer will prepare the following:
- an estimated quote based on the level of damage, if any
- the cost of materials to repair such damage
- and, last but not least, labor costs
Suppose the roof inspection is requested in connection with a property sale. In that case, the roofing inspector will provide both parties with a report stating the roof’s condition and any recommendation for repairs and cost.
Finding the Perfect Roofing Inspection Company
There are many scammers and ‘fly-by-night’ roofing ‘specialists’ out there! Before you contract a roofing inspector, do your research on the company.
Research other roofing companies before you contract one. You can check their business rating on BBB.org. Check previous clients’ reviews and complaints there may be.
Check that their roof inspectors have the right qualifications and certifications. Is the company insured?
That’s one of the strongest indicators of whether a roofing company is reputable, or they are one of those ‘fly-by-night’ roofers.
Keep the Roof Over Your Head
The condition of your roof is the secret to a well-built, isolated and well-built home. Similarly, regardless of how old or new a roof is, it should be professionally tested to avoid unnecessary repairs and even potential accidents.
Correctly maintained and tracked, the roofs appear to have a long life cycle. If the roof inspection is carried out on a daily basis by a trained roofing specialist who tests for structural integrity, insulation, tile, shingle placement, concealed damage, insulation, leakage, moisture and mould formation, the roof can have a longer lifetime.
Let’s face it, your roof is the most significant investment for the lifespan of your house. Its external appearance will boost the value, and it protects the house’s interior from potential weather damage.
If you are in the Missouri area and feel your roof needs a professional inspection or repair, don’t hesitate to call us or contact us online for your free estimate today. Our highly trained roofer team is ready to ensure your roof gets the care it deserves.