Roof Inspection FAQ: What Should I Expect on Roof Inspection Day?

Recommendations for how often to inspect your roof can range from twice a year to once every three or four years. Though it can be tempting to have an out-of-sight, out-of-mind attitude toward your roofing system, the truth is that the small cost of having a professional roof inspection is well worth it when compared to how expensive it can be to repair problems that could have been prevented with more diligent attention.

On top of scheduling regular roof inspections, having your roof inspected after a storm is important to ensure that no damage is caused. If you're planning on buying or selling a home, a roof inspection can provide invaluable information regarding the condition of a home's roof.

If you've never hired a professional roofer to inspect your roof, there's a good chance you have a lot of unanswered questions. How long will the inspection take, and what will it entail? What should you expect on roof inspection day? Let's look at some of the most common questions we get about roof inspections to help you understand what the process looks like.

Do Roofers Need to Get on My Roof To Do an Inspection?

Roofers will typically need to get onto your roof for a comprehensive inspection. While it's true that certain aspects of the inspection can be conducted from the inside of the home or from the ground, a more thorough evaluation will result from the roofer actually visually inspecting the roofing system. This way, they will be able to inspect critical components of your roof to give you a complete report on the state of your roof and any repairs that might be necessary immediately or in the near future.

There are, however, some other tools and techniques roofers can use to assess the condition of a roof without physically climbing up there. These additional methods tend to be more expensive than a traditional roofing inspection, but they might sometimes be warranted.

A Ladder For Roof Access

For example, an infrared roof inspection can give you a more thorough picture of the state of your roof. This type of technology can identify small cracks and leaks that could grow into larger and more expensive problems over time, for example, in a way that simply isn't possible with the naked eye.

Additionally, some roofers will use drones to inspect the condition of a roof. This can also be more costly than a standard roof inspection, but it might be necessary if your roof poses a high safety risk for the inspector.

How Long Will a Roof Inspection Take?

Most roof inspections will last somewhere between 30 minutes and a few hours, but there are a number of factors that can impact the inspection's duration.

A Roof Inspection-1

For example, the following can have an influence on the length of time a roof inspector will be at your home:

  • The size of your roof
  • The complexity of your roof
  • The scope of the inspection
  • How easy it is to access your roof
  • The condition of your roof

When you hire a roofing company for an inspection, they should be able to give you a rough estimate of how long it will take depending on the scope and purpose of the inspection, the size of your roof, and more.

Why Do Roofers Need to Go Inside My Home For a Roof Inspection?

It might seem strange at first that a roofing company would come inside your home during a roof inspection– isn't everything they need to see outside?

Inspector Inside a Home

The reality is that roof leaks will ultimately damage the interior of your home, and there will often be signs of a leaking roof that are more apparent from the inside than the outside. Inspectors will therefore check the attic, interior ceilings, and interior walls for indications of water intrusion, including water stains, mold, and rot. They will also check for holes in the walls or ceilings, pests in the attic, and other indications of problems with your roofing system.

Is It Okay For Roofers to Walk Around My Roof?

If you are hiring a professional roofing company, they will be trained to take precautions to avoid causing damage to your roof and experienced in safely walking on roofs. That being said, if your roof is in poor condition, the slope is exceptionally steep, or significant damage has been done to it, it's possible it's not safe for them to walk around up there. Any reputable company will be able to assess whether or not their crew can safely walk on your roof. Similarly, roofers will likely reschedule a roof inspection if the weather conditions don't allow them to safely access your roof– strong winds, ice, or rain can make it unsafe for roofers to walk on the surface of your roof.

Roofers Walking on a Roof

It is understandable to be concerned about having people walking around your roof– after all, wouldn't you be liable if something happened to them or if damage was caused to your property? For this and many other reasons, hiring roofing contractors that are fully licensed and insured is essential. To help you vet any roofing company before they do work on your house, check out the top fifty questions to ask before hiring a roofer.

Why Did the Roofers Not Get on My Roof For the Inspection?

If a roofer came out for an inspection and didn't get up onto your roof, it's possible that the company is not reputable or professional. On the other hand, there are some legitimate reasons why they might not actually get onto your roof during an inspection. Any roofing company worth their salt, though, will be able to clearly explain why they didn't get onto the roof and the alternative methods they used to assess the roof's condition.

For example, roofers might not get onto a roof if there are safety concerns, such as if the roof is in such poor condition that it would be potentially hazardous for them to do so. They also might not get onto your roof if the weather conditions don't allow them to safely do so, such as ice on the roof, rain, or strong winds.

Roofers also might not get onto your roof for certain types of inspections– depending on the scope and purpose of the inspection, physically getting on the roof might not be necessary.

Inspecting a Roof Interior

If it is unsafe for roofers to get up on your roof due to the condition of your roof, the weather, or accessibility issues, they should either provide alternative methods for inspecting your roof or reschedule the inspection, in the case of bad weather, for a day that they will be able to safely access your roof.

One option for roofs that pose a risk to inspectors due to an extremely steep slope or structural problems is a drone inspection. In these instances, an inspector will fly a drone over the house and its exterior to take photos and videos of the entire roofing system. They will then be able to analyze the information they collected to give you a detailed report.

What Does a Roofer Look For During a Roof Inspection?

When a roof inspector shows up for a scheduled inspection, they will be looking for any damage, unusual wear and tear, leaks, or other issues that could compromise the integrity of your roofing system. The scope of most roof inspections can be divided into four broad categories: a material inspection, a structural inspection, an interior inspection, and a workmanship inspection.

Material Inspection

A roof inspector will look at the condition of your roofing material to ensure that it is still performing as expected. For example, if you have an asphalt shingle roof, they will look for curling, loose, or missing shingles, as well as moss, stains, or rust. Additionally, they will note any shingle granules that have fallen into the gutters or settled in roof valleys as a part of their determination into the remaining useful life of your roof.

Roofing Material Inspection

During this time, an inspector will also look for gaps or deterioration around vent pipes or other roof penetrations to ensure that your home is still fully protected from water intrusion in these vulnerable areas.

Structural Inspection

When you hire a qualified roofing inspector, they will check for any signs of structural issues with your roofing system. For example, they will look for signs that your roof is sagging and uneven roof planes while also closely examining the structure of your gutter system, fascia, and soffits.

A Structural Roof Inspection

Your chimney will also be inspected at this time for damaged caps, crumbling grout, or cracks, and they also might take a close look at your attic ventilation system to make sure it is sufficient.

Interior Inspection

A roofing inspector will also want to take a look inside your home, as water penetration and roof leaks will ultimately damage the interior of your house. They'll closely examine your attic, ceilings, and walls for any signs that water has worked its way inside.

Interior Roof Inspection

In many instances, it's easier to identify a leak from the inside of a home than it is from the roof, particularly when the leak is small.

Workmanship Inspection

Choosing high-quality roofing materials when you install a new roof is important, but they won't be able to perform as intended if they aren't installed properly. For this reason, inspectors will also look for workmanship problems either resulting from the initial installation or subsequent repairs that could end up leaving you with roof issues down the road. For example, if they notice that the flashing has been installed incorrectly, this would be a sign that there might be more workmanship problems to address down the road.

A Roof Workmanship Inspection

If you hire a reputable roofing company to replace or repair your roof, they should stand behind the work that they do by offering a workmanship warranty. There can be a lot of variation between these warranties, but if an inspector has noticed obvious issues with the workmanship, you'll want to dig up your warranty and see if you're covered for the necessary repairs.

What's the Difference Between a Home Inspection and a Roof Inspection?

When you want every nook and cranny of a home inspected before purchasing or selling a property, you can hire a home inspector. A home inspection will include a roof inspection, but it won't include looking at your roofing system nearly as thoroughly as a roof inspection.

Home inspectors might note issues that they notice on your roof, such as loose or missing shingles. However, they might not necessarily get up on the roof and will necessarily be more of a generalist compared to a professional roofer, who will have a great deal more insight into the condition of a roof.

Inspecting a Roof-2

On the other hand, a roof inspection is a dedicated inspection of one of the most crucial systems of your home– your roof. This type of inspection involves thoroughly investigating the condition of your roofing system, including its current performance, and detailing any repairs, if any, that need to be made.

How Much Will a Roof Inspection Cost?

How much your roof inspection costs is going to depend on factors like the size and complexity of your roof, your location, the specific services the roofing company is providing, and more.

Calculating a Cost

Given all of the different things that can influence the cost, it might not be surprising that there's a pretty big range when looking at roof inspection costs across types of homes and locations– some sources state that the price can range anywhere from $75 to $800. On average, though, standard physical roofing inspections tend to cost between $75 and $200. A drone roof inspection will usually run you somewhere between $150 and $400, while an infrared roof inspection costs between $400 and $600.

Book a Free 30 Minute Inspection With Colony Roofers

If it's time for you to learn more about the condition of your roof, Colony Roofers is only a call away. We offer free 30-minute inspections and estimates for homeowners and business owners in the Atlanta area, helping you get a better sense of the state of your roofing system and what repairs, if any, will be necessary now or in the near future.

Booking a Free Inspection With Colony Roofers

Colony Roofers is a locally owned and operated roofing company that provides exceptional quality and value to all of our customers. We offer a rock-solid workmanship warranty as well as long-term product warranties and are here to help whether you need a roof replacement, a roof repair, storm restoration, or any other roofing service.

Contact us today for a free 30-minute inspection and estimate!