How would you know your structure should be repaired or replaced if it’s overdue for a home roof inspection? Annual roof checkups allow contractors to spot issues early on before they get worse. Hire professionals to take a look today.
Understand the Importance of Roof Inspections
Roof problems can creep up on homeowners when they least expect them. No matter the roof type, investing in ongoing preventative maintenance helps your structure remain robust and reliable years past its expected service life. High winds, hail storms, and temperature extremes can do considerable damage to your roofing system, so you should call contractors after inclement weather to schedule an inspection. Even if it seems fine from your point of view, it takes a trained professional to pinpoint roofing red flags.
Getting a home roof inspection each year is necessary to extend your roof’s service life and provide dependable protection for you and your family. You expect your roofing system to shield you from every storm and keep you safe, but it can’t perform its job to the best of its ability if it has unaddressed damage. Certified technicians analyze your structure from the inside out to eliminate the guesswork.
Roofing systems are made with all kinds of industrial materials designed to stand the test of time, but your system’s integrity will naturally decline over the years. It’s true that there’s nothing you can do to stop wear and tear, but you can keep up with annual inspections and minor repairs to make your roof last as long as possible.
How Long Does a Roof Inspection Take?
A thorough home roof inspection includes the system’s interior and exterior. Although roofing contractors could take 30 to 45 minutes to examine the entire roof, various factors affect how long the inspection lasts, especially when contractors spot severe problems. In some cases, it could take several hours.
Poor ventilation can be a silent killer for home roofing systems. If the attic lacks proper ventilation, cold and hot air can get trapped inside and it could retain excess moisture and humidity. Eventually, moisture accumulation in the attic will damage nails, flashing, and duct straps. If this problem goes unaddressed for too long, it can result in roof leaks—during home roof inspections, contractors check these areas for rust, which is a telltale sign of inadequate ventilation.
Interior or Exterior Water Damage
Water damage is one of the leading causes of roof failure, so it’s important to address it as soon as possible. Moisture intrusion leads to leaks, which are not only a nuisance but also dangerous and can create slip-and-fall hazards. In dark, hidden places where water has accumulated, it may also lead to mold and mildew.
Mold has a particular stench and can be harmful to inhale. It also has the potential to cause minor to severe health problems for building occupants. Contractors keep an eye out for mold growth on or under your roof deck. Signs of water damage may also appear inside your home. If you notice dark stains on the walls or ceilings, moisture is seeping through the panels, and your roof is past due for repairs. If this is the case, contractors must take action right away.
Roof Deck and Underlayment
The condition of your roof’s deck and underlayment can make or break the home roof inspection. Contractors walk across the deck to check if it feels solid or spongy under their feet. If the surface isn’t firm, it means the underlayment is saturated. To check, they have to remove some roofing material. During this step, they count how many layers are saturated. If they find that more than one layer is damaged, it may result in mandatory replacement or re-roofing.
Roof vents come in many shapes and sizes. No matter which kind you have, they should be checked during a home roof inspection. If you have gable, soffit, or ridge vents, contractors look for obstructions. They also check gas vents to ensure the expansion and contraction caused by weather fluctuations haven’t pulled fasteners loose.
Roof inspectors take note of shingles that are cracked, chipped, or missing. They also check the integrity of the installation. If your shingles weren’t installed correctly, they won’t last as long as they should, and it may be the reason they couldn’t weather the storm. Indications of poor installation include nails driven in sideways, which causes tiny bumps and imperfections in the surface.
Roof’s Penetration Points and Add-Ons
Anywhere there’s an opening in the surface, whether for piping or skylights, must be sealed tight. Otherwise, your roof is vulnerable to leaks, drafts, and pest invasion. Contractors check roof pipes and boots to make sure they’re closed. They’re designed to keep water out, but hail storms and other outdoor debris can cause them to loosen their grip over time. If the pipe boot is no longer secure around the pipe, the area should be sealed right away to prevent issues.
Your chimney’s flashing mortar and cap must remain in good condition. Roofing inspectors look for moss and moisture damage. If they discover chimney issues, they may be able to fix them. Chimneys are more complex than they appear, though, and you may need a chimney specialist to diagnose the problem and perform repairs.
Your roof flashing is the metal surrounding the area against the wall, chimney, or roof valleys. They keep water from getting inside your home and protect the material from extreme weather conditions. If they’re rusted, they must be replaced to prevent leaks in the future.
Roof gutters and downspouts should be free of dirt and debris. Otherwise, water can’t flow freely and stays on top of the roof surface, seeping into the underlayment. Because of this, it’s wise to clean your gutters regularly. Contractors may remove leaves and sticks that are overwhelming the system. If they discover the gutters are rusted or falling off, they typically recommend gutter repair or replacement.
How Does Roof Health Impact Homeowners Insurance?
If your roof has exceeded its usable service life or if it has tremendous damage, you risk losing homeowners coverage. If your roof begins to leak, report it right away. Problems that go unaddressed are considered negligence on your part, and the insurance agency can deny coverage or refuse to renew your policy.
A strong, reliable roof contributes to overall home stability. Take the initiative and invest in ongoing repairs and annual home roof inspections to avoid paying out of pocket for a roof replacement when roof damage is too far gone.
Call Kirberg as Soon as You Suspect Roofing Issues
Kirberg Roofing is familiar with Midwest weather fluctuations. We urge our customers to invest in our Annual Slate and Tile Maintenance Program. It’s your responsibility as the homeowner to ensure your roof is in good shape, but you don’t have to do it alone. We cover all bases to ensure the home roof inspection checklist is completed when we visit. Give us a call today to schedule your appointment.