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What to Expect from a Roof Inspection

How old is your roof? If you don’t know the answer or if you’ve started to see signs of wear and tear, it may be time to call in a professional to conduct a roofing inspection. A thorough inspection will find obvious signs of damage or degradation along with warning signs that you’d never think to look for. Savvy homeowners start annual roofing inspections at the 10-year mark to look for small problems that might turn into big ones. It’s also a good idea to get an inspection after significant weather occurrences. But how do you know when an inspector is doing their job correctly or just trying to sell you a new roof? Here is what to expect from a quality roofing inspection: 

When to Consider a Roof Inspection 

A good time to have a roof inspection is after a storm that involves high winds, hail, or flying debris. If you do suspect your roof was damaged by a storm, be sure to contact your insurance company. They will arrange for their own roof inspector and the repairs might be covered by your insurance policy.  

Otherwise, if you live in a cold climate, summer or fall may be the best time for a roof inspection so any needed repairs can be made before winter weather sets in. 

What a Roofing Inspector Looks For 

        A thorough roof inspection will involve a look for water leaks (particularly in your attic), wear and tear, moss and lichen, missing shingles, or evidence of poor workmanship from the original installation. Some of the items on your inspector’s to-do should include:   

        • Ask the Right Questions: Before your inspector begins, they will ask you whether you’ve seen signs of water damage, loose shingles, or obvious issues. They may ask about recent events such as storms and tree branches falling on your roof. They may ask whether you’ve had installations that could affect the integrity of your roof. A poorly installed satellite dish, for example, might leave a small hole on the exterior of your roof that could cause interior damage.  
        • Check the Structural Integrity of the Roof: If any part of your roof is sagging or bending, those are signs of significant, structural issues. Your roof line should be straight. Your inspector will also evaluate the condition of the fascia, soffit, and gutters.  They should examine the flashing around vent pipes, skylights, and chimneys, and the rubber boots and seals around them. They look to see if the flashing was installed properly and if there are cracks in a chimney or damage to the chimney cap, that might allow water to enter your home. And they should also make sure your gutters are attached properly and that they do their job well. 
        • Determine if the Roof Materials are Intact: Roof shingles should not be loose, missing, or curling at the edges. The inspector looks for stains, moss, and rust, all signs of water damage or excessive moisture. They should check for missing flashing or fasteners. And pieces of shingles in the gutters or on the ground around the downspouts are indicators of shingle deterioration.  
        • Look at the Interior of Your Home: A thorough roof inspection includes the interior of your home. Inside, they look for dark streaks and water stains on the ceilings, attic, and walls, as well as mold or rot that could indicate water is entering your home. They should take a trip into your attic and check for proper roof ventilation. Your roofing system needs to ensure that heat is released, and fresh air is permitted in to regulate temperature and moisture. 

        Did Your Roofing Inspector Go Up on the Roof? 

        Make sure the contractor actually goes up on the roof to inspect it. Drones may provide a good visual, but they’re not as dependable as a contractor up on the roof touching and feeling for issues that you can’t see with the naked eye or a quick visual pass.    

        A Written Report about Your Roof 

        After the inspection is complete, you should receive a written report with recommendations for repairs or replacement. Before you decide to replace your roof, get at least one other opinion and a price quote from a different roofing contractor.  

        NOW Remodeling in Boise, Idaho and Spokane and Richland, Washington is a Preferred Contractor of CertainTeed Roofing Systems which means we meet their high standards for installer training, insurance, and licensing. Because we install full roofing systems to the exact manufacturer specifications, we provide you with a lifetime plus warranty that covers products and labor. Request your free quote or ask about a roofing inspection today.   

        Post by Nathan Powers
        July 4, 2023