We encourage you to do a visible inspection of your roof from the ground and from your attic (if accessible) a few times a year. You will often catch the beginning signs of shingle wear (curling, blistering, or tearing), gaps or cracks near the chimney or walls or around plumbing pipes, or wet spots on the roof deck. But unless you can safely and easily access your roof, we encourage you to contact a licensed roof inspector near you for all roof surface inspections and roof repairs.
We recommend that your annual inspection is during the winter months to catch any damage from the past year and prepare the roof for the spring rains. If you are buying a house, it’s a good time to have the roof inspected by a licensed roofing professional as most home inspectors perform inspections from the ground and could, therefore, miss what only a surface inspection can reveal. Any time you have your roof repaired, have a licensed roofer inspect your whole roof instead of only looking at the problem area.
At a minimum, we recommend an annual inspection by a licensed roof inspector near you as part of a roof maintenance program, especially if your roof is over 10 years old.
First of all, check the roof surfaces and inspect for evidence of excessive shingle wear in one or more areas. Common problems of an aging roof are blisters (raised “bubbles” in the shingles), loss of granules, or curling.
Next, check for “soft spots” on the roof where water damage may have caused the roof deck to rot. This can be found in valleys (where two roof surfaces meet and form a “V”), areas near flashing or penetrations, or where there is a nail hole. Nail holes can be from scaffolding used by siding installers (if they don’t caulk them when they are finished), or nails that have popped loose from the roof installation. These are slow leaks that require only a minor repair if they are caught early enough.
Finally, check all roof penetrations and flashings to be sure they are secure and watertight. Look for evidence of damage to the shingles or surrounding roof area, and along walls and chimneys to be sure flashing is secure.
Generally, a roof inspection will reveal either:
When you have your roof inspected, be sure to ask questions about any problems that are reported to you, especially if a new roof is the recommendation. A good roofing company should be able to explain their findings to your satisfaction, including providing pictures as needed.
When it comes to roof inspections, what you don’t know can cost you. A roof can have “silent” leaks for years before you see any evidence of a problem. For example, water leaking in through a small nail hole will eventually rot the roof deck and then start to drip down through your ceiling before you ever notice there is a problem. By that time the damage is more extensive and requires a more costly repair than simply replacing the damaged shingle. Having your roof inspected can reveal these problems BEFORE they cause damage on the inside of your home.
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