Why get a roof inspection?
You are aging. Don't deny it. Every day takes its toll on you little by little. Because nobody wants to get old, we do things to delay the inevitable — we eat right (some of the time), exercise regularly (or occasionally) and see our doctors for check-ups to be sure that we have no serious problems. After all, if we take care of the small stuff, it will delay the more serious issues that can shorten our lives.
A roof is the same way. Everyday exposure to sun, rain, air conditioning repair people, and other wear and tear slowly ages the roof membrane until the service life ends. Every extra year one can eke out of the roof is that much more money that can be saved for other purposes.
A roof doesn't need good food or proper exercise. But a roof does need regular check-ups in the form of regular inspections and prompt repairs.
What benefit is there in spending money every year to maintain the roof? Studies have shown that a roof that is not regularly maintained will only last about half of its expected service life.
But, you say, "That's why I have a warranty." Don't assume that a warranty will help. Almost all manufacturers of roofing materials state specifically in their warranty that the warranty is void if the roof is not maintained. If you can't show that the roof has been maintained, you will not have a case when you try to make a claim on a supposed warranty issue.
Experienced facility managers know that a roof should be inspected at least twice a year to keep the roof alive as long as possible and to maintain the warranty.
What does a roof inspection include?
One benefit of scheduling a “peace of mind” type of roof inspection or because you are buying or selling a house, o r because your insurance needs you to do a roof inspection--- No matter the reason, you should get a roof inspection every year is the ability to catch potential roofing problems before they become bigger and cost more. It’s also helpful to get a professional estimate of how much useful life your roof might have left.
Here are common components a roof inspection should include:
• Overall appearance of the roof, both exterior and interior. This will indicate whether there's surface deterioration or any physical damage.
• Evidence of ceiling cracks and leaks.
• Condition of fascia, gutters and drains, skylights, chimneys and vents.
• Curled, broken or missing shingles.
• Areas where water may collect, like roof valleys.
• Damaged or missing flashing points. Nail popups
How Much Does a Roof Inspection Cost?
Here at DFW Best Roofing a Roof inspection is free.
The roofing system of your home or commercial building can be one of the most expensive projects to undertake. In order avoid costly repairs and preserve your investment, it is highly advisable to schedule a roof inspection at least once a year. The National Roofing Council Association suggests at least two roof inspections per year. The following are factors of a roofing inspection.
Any roof inspection should look at the roof, of course, but the roof surface is only one item that should be checked. The first thing to look at is your files. Do you have all of the paperwork you need? How about a copy of the warranty? Do you have the names and phone numbers of the companies that have been involved with the roof — previous inspectors, roofing contractors, architects, manufacturer technical services? You should have a copy of all the repair orders and the results of the repairs made. Finally, there should be a roof plan, drawn to scale, that not only shows all the equipment on the roof, but also the locations of any leaks and any repairs made.
The walls and glazing should also be checked. Too many times, leaks from wall, sealant and window failures are disguised as "roof" leaks. Look for cracks and water stains that may be symptomatic of problems in these areas. The worst offenders are pipes, conduit and other penetrations through the walls. Too often these are left unsealed, especially when they are installed as retrofits.
Once those steps have been taken, you are ready to look at the roof. The best place to start is with an overall look at the roof. Is it covered in debris, like leaves, plants and old air conditioning equipment? This is a sure sign that the roof has been neglected. Look at the surface of the roof. If there is a coating, is it intact? If there is gravel or ballast, are the rocks evenly distributed and covering the whole surface?
The surface of the roof provides protection from ultraviolet radiation from the sun, which causes most roofing materials to age and break down. It's like your skin. If you don't give yourself UV protection, your skin ages prematurely and sometimes with serious results.
You should also check the drainage system. If there are large areas of standing water that never seem to go away, it may be possible to solve the problem simply by removing the gunk from around the drain. Or you may need to snake the roof drain pipes or down spouts. Standing water can lead to premature failure of the roof as the water may leach the chemicals that keep roofs pliable out of the membrane. Worse still, if there is a puncture in an area of standing water, what should have been a minor drip becomes a major disaster as all of that standing water ends up inside the building.
Roof failures rarely start in the large expanses of field membrane. Any roof check should pay special attention to the membrane and metal at changes in plane and at penetrations through the roof. First, make sure the surfacing is intact. Look for punctures, tears and scrapes in the membrane. Check for unsealed laps both in the vertical part of the flashings and also where the flashing terminates on the field of the roof. Make sure the membrane is not drooping. This is a symptom that the flashing was improperly installed — either it wasn't fastened properly at the top, or it was not properly adhered to the wall or curb. If you see diagonal wrinkles in the flashings, you have a situation where the roof deck and the wall are moving independently. These wrinkles will end up as cracks in the flashings and ultimately as leaks.
If you have expansion joints running across your roof, including them in the inspection is crucial. Some roofing contractors don't terminate expansion joints correctly and, as a result, the expansion joints crack at the ends. Check the rubber bellows for cuts and open laps and also for "repairs" done with roofing cement or other inappropriate materials.
If penetrations such as pipes and equipment stands are waterproofed with metal or plastic pitch pans or concrete rings, check the sealer to be sure that it is not cracked and that the pan or ring is completely filled with the sealer. Check the bottom of the concrete ring to be sure the seal between the ring and the roof membrane is still sealed. Check alternate flashings such as prefabricated metals or plastic or rubber boots for cracks, holes and failed sealants.
Why do I need an insurance roof inspection?
Requiring a roof inspection for a new home insurance application is not unusual.
An advantage to you and a disadvantage to your insurance company is that the roofer may find some existing damage caused by a recent storm, and your insurance company may end up replacing all or part of your roof.
Roofs are a hot topic in the insurance industry. Home insurers have paid for millions for roof replacements in the past decade because of wind or hail damage. Many of those roofs were old and in bad shape. But since homeowners policies have traditionally paid the full replacement cost for structural damage from storms, insurers have been required to pay the entire cost of a brand-new roof, regardless of the age or condition of the old one.
However, many insurance companies are starting to pull the plug on replacement cost coverage for older roofs. Many are now paying the actual cash value, or ACV, defined as replacement cost less depreciation, for roofs over a certain age (typically 15 years). Amid the transition, many insurance companies are trying to determine the age and condition of the roofs they currently insure.
When to Inspect the Roof?
You want to have the inspections done once before the season with the most severe weather and once after. In the northern climes, the severe weather is winter where the cold, storms and precipitation contributes more to the demise of the roof. However, where hot weather rules like Texas, summer is the severe season. The solar UV radiation is higher, and the roof is subjected to high heat and to thermal shock due to sudden cooling during summer rains. So you want to check the roof before the severe season to prepare the roof for its ordeal to come and once after the hot weather..
Periodically, a formal moisture survey should be done in addition to the normal visual survey. There are three major types of moisture survey systems used, none of which actually measures water. All of them measure properties of the roof materials that change when there is water present. An infrared scan measures the amount of heat retained or lost through the insulation. Wet insulation transmits heat better than dry materials.
Thus, the infrared camera will pick up the higher levels of heat radiated by wet materials. Nuclear isotopic meters work by sending hydrogen ions into the roof system and counting the number that bounce back. Because water has two hydrogen ions in every molecule, the number of ions counted increases significantly when water is present in the roof.
Electrical capacitance and resistance meters measure the ability of roof materials to conduct electricity. They work on the principle that wet materials conduct electricity better than dry ones do.
Each of these testing methods has limitations that need to be discussed with a roofing expert to determine their applicability to a particular roof before they are used. It is worthwhile to have a formal moisture survey done at least once every five years. If a roof is found to be in marginal condition at any time, a survey should be used at that point to help formulate a course of action.
Roof Inspection Building Types & Water Leak Inspection : Home, Apartment, or Business.
A roofing inspection involves a licensed and insured professional climbing and visually assessing the current condition of your roof. If you own a home, factors affecting the price of inspection will include the number of stories the inspector must climb and the pitch of the roof. A national average for inspecting a residential home is $99. Apartment buildings can be many times larger than a single family household and are commonly designed with more chimneys, valleys, and vents, which will take the inspector much more time to walk and carefully assess the roof. The average rate of inspecting the roof of an apartment building is $243. Businesses or commercial buildings are often higher and larger in size compared to residential properties, these buildings also have unique structural designs which the inspector will need to consider in order to safely access the roof; the average rate for inspecting this type of roof is $443.
Why an Inspection is Needed
Leaks can be caused by many factors including missing shingles, nail pops, old flashing, chimney problems, etc. When you begin to notice "tea stains" on the ceiling of your uppermost floor, chances are you have a roof leak. The longer that a leak is left unrepaired, the more damage it will cause to your roof and the interior of your home or business.
Factors for a roof inspection for water leak detection
Roof systems come in several different types of materials in order to suit the aesthetic and structural needs of each building. Each type of material ages, damages, and wears differently which requires specific set of skill sets in order properly assess and inspect the roof. Metal roofing is harder to walk on and can take longer to pin point problems,
Number of Stories
One of the main factors involved in determining the cost of a roof inspection is the number of stories of the building. The higher the building is, the more risk that is involved and the more difficult it can be to access it. A higher roof can require longer ladders which make it difficult to transport. A national rate for inspecting a one story building is $117, while a building with two stories is $117. Average rates for a roof inspection of a three story building is $317 respectively.
Size of Roof
The size of your roof is also another important factor directly associated with the cost of an inspection. The larger the roof is, the more time and risk that is involved in assessing it. Nationally, an average price for inspecting a roof under 1,000 square feet (or 10 squares) is $85, $132 for a roof between 1,000 and 1,999 square feet, $229 for a roof size between 2,000 and 2,999 square feet. Lastly the average price for a roof size between 3,000-3,999 square feet is $254. Hiring a professional roofing inspector can be a safe and efficient way for you to avoid costly repairs in future and offer you valuable knowledge about your system before hiring a contractor for a replacement.
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