Roofs are often compared to tires. Only when there is a problem do we think of them, and only when they must be replaced. However, if we maintain them and our tires properly and regularly, we can extend their useful life. We must ensure that the roof is properly maintained so that its useful life can be prolonged.

The NRCA recommends that we inspect our roofs two times a year. Once after the hottest weather, and the other after the coldest weather. A roof inspection is also worthwhile after any major weather event such as a storm.

But why is it so important to inspect roofs, and what can we expect to discover?

Weathering And Aging

Multiply bituminous low-slope roofs have a benchmark life of approximately 20 to 30 years, and typical single-ply roofs are typically 15 to 25 years old. All roofs experience normal weathering and aging, resulting in visible damage.

As roofs wear over time, openings result in water infiltration. Regular inspections identify deteriorated areas and enable an owner to plan maintenance on these conditions to prevent further damage.

Storm Damage

High wind, hail, and other types of weather can lead to roof damage that may require repairs or insurance claims. Immediately after a storm, the roof should be inspected for water infiltration to prevent further damage. The damage caused by winds and hail can be very minor and may only require minor repairs, or it can be quite significant and require a complete roof replacement.

Insurers report that a substantial amount of storm damage is caused by debris, components, or material being blown off a roof during high winds.

Tree limbs can break off and fall on roofs causing significant damage. Roof blow-off begins at the perimeter, and if the perimeter is not properly secured, severe damage can result. Storm damage requires emergency repair work that can cost additional money.

Regular inspections will help maintain the roof’s condition. An inspection will reveal leaks, drainage difficulties, and damage caused by vegetation, among other things.

Leak Assessment

rr2 4 Major Reasons Why You Should Have Your Roof Inspected

Most inspections are triggered by leaks after heavy rain. However, a leak is only symptomatic of underlying problems that may have been accumulating for some time. In some situations, if you are looking for a silver lining, a water leak may be a good thing. This is because a roof leak without visible evidence can produce undesired deterioration which could include rotted wood, mold, corrosion, or wet insulation.

A verified customer who contacted an expert from to evaluate his roof for water damage discovered that the moisture entry point was far away from the physical evidence or detection point. This is common with leaks, as they may indicate a major roof problem or a minor local issue.

As a general rule, low-slope roofs may leak in the open area of the roof, but leaks are most likely to take place around discontinuities, such as elevation changes, expansion joints, penetrations, and flashings.

Conversely, severely degraded roofs may not show any sign of water leakage, particularly if the roofs have concrete decks where water can migrate a considerable distance before reaching a point of entry in the concrete. In such a condition, roof insulation damage caused by moisture saturation may require replacement of the roof.

Needed Improvements

Regular building inspections highlight the need for systematically improving the building, many of which have to do with the roof. For example, the increased use of electronic equipment, video displays, security systems, and computers has led many owners to consider adding lightning protection to older structures.

Roof access is a crucial component of any building. The roofing industry knows that roofs that are easy to access are maintained, while roofs that cannot be accessed are ignored. Establishing permanent ladders and safety railings around roof hatches greatly enhances safe access to roofs, facilitating regular inspections.

Building owners should establish a roof inspection schedule. The inspection process is relatively inexpensive and can provide important information that can prevent additional costs to be incurred in the future. Furthermore, regular roof inspections provide a list of tasks that should be completed for routine maintenance and also enable owners to plan for future maintenance costs.

Roof inspections are the starting point is an effective proactive roof management strategy that will assist homeowners to avoid emergency roof leaks. Amongst building maintenance procedures, roof inspections yield the greatest return on investment.

Most homeowners ignore problems with their roofs until they have affected other parts of the house. Yes, checking your roof might be a pain if you wish to do it yourself, and it can also hurt your pocket if you wish to have someone else maintain and inspect your roof for you. However, if you delay checking your roof, it can gradually decrease its lifespan and lead to many different problems that may be more expensive than getting your roof inspected and fixed right away. So ensure that you make this a part of your living.

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