A Guide To Inspecting Your Own Roof

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Hiring contractors for roofing repairs can be expensive. Fortunately, armed with a little knowledge, the home handyman can learn to discern when to call home repair services and when they can execute an easy fix. Here is a handy guide on how to inspect your own roof.

  1. First, look at your paperwork. Do you have the warranty paperwork, if any? What about the contact information for any roofing contractors that have done any work on it? This would include repair orders and the results of that work. You also should have a roof plan that shows the roof equipment and the locations of any repairs.
  2. Second, check the walls inside your house, especially the attic. Look for water stains that would indicate leaks. Cracks and water stains can indicate pipes and conduits that were not properly sealed, especially if they are not original.
  3. Finally, you are prepared to look at the roof itself. Start with the overall condition- is there debris, leaves, or old equipment on it? If there is a coating, is it intact and still covering the entire roof? Spots where the coating has worn down are more likely to have issues like exposure and rot.
  4. Check the drainage system. It is recommended that homeowners with high-shedding trees such as pine clean their gutters out at least 4 times a year. If you don’t have these trees, twice a year should suffice. Large puddles of standing water indicate a clogged gutter which could be an easy fix for the home handyman. Standing water can rot the roof and cause serious damage within the home.
  5. Pay close attention to the roof at any place there is a change in plane or a penetration such as a pipe. Almost 95% of roof leaks occur at points where the roofing membrane ends or is interrupted. Check seals around pipes and flashings.
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