What About Roof Inspection?
Big problems start out as small ones. That's why calling Alltex can help spot problems that can be fixed before they cost you big money. An Alltex roof inspection can identify potential problems in the most leak-prone areas of your house which include valleys, plumbing penetrations, and roof vents. A no-cost inspection can reveal other hidden problems such as dry-rot decking, inadequate drainage, and "dead valleys".
A detailed roof inspection will reveal many problems that cannot be seen from the ground. Some common leak areas include:
- Step flashing around chimneys and along step-down walls
- Valley flashing
- Plumbing stacks and heat vents
- Backed out nails
- Missing shingles and ridge row
- Improper shingle installation
When buying or selling a home, a roof inspector will inspect the roof, looking at several factors that indicate the overall condition of the roof. Some repairs may be required. If the roof is exceptionally poor condition, a full roof replaceent may be called for. Here are some things an inspector commonly looks for to make sure the roof is in adequate condition:
- The first thing an inspector looks for is the age and overall condition of the roof. A composition roof, the most common material, will be good for 18 - 24 years. After that time the material becomes brittle, and protective ceramic granules begin to slough off.
- Has the roof been damaged by hail or high winds? Storm damaged shingles may require minor repair, or even a full roof replacement. Hail is the greatest threat to a roof. Large stones (golf ball or larger) can bruise or puncture a shingle, shortening its life significantly. Hail damage constitutes an insurable loss and a full roof replacement is usually required to pass roof inspection.
- Is there significant granular loss? Older roofs (usually more than 12 years old) tend to have a noticeable degree of granular loss. This loss is accelerated if the roof has been damaged by hail. Another major factor leading to granular loss, which may require shingle repair or replacement is excessive attic heat. Adding soffit vents, and increasing attic ventilation will help in attic cooling.
- Are penetration flashings in good condition? Plumbing pipes, which penetrate the roof, must have a protective flashing around them to protect against water entry. A rubber boot snugs against the pipe, providing that protection. If the boot is cracked or has shrunken it should be replaced.
- Chimney, Skylight, and Other Flashings: Wherever a hole has been cut in the roof, the edges must be properly sealed. Roof inspectors look to see if the flashings (usually galvanized metal strips) are properly fastened to the decking, as nails tend to back out over time.
- Are there any missing or cracked shingles? Frequent offenders are areas where overhanging tree limbs have rubbed the granules off the shingles. Repairing shingles or replacing shingles may be required in order to pass roof inspection.
- Roof Overlays: Some roofs have been installed on top of an older roof, as opposed to having removed the old roof before new roof installation. This was common practice 15-20 years ago, but home inspectors are becoming more reluctant to pass an overlay, especially if the bottom layer is wood shingles. Some insurance companies will not insure a wood shingle overlay.
- Dry Rot: Inspectors usually require replacing areas where wood is continually exposed to moisture and has caused the wood to rot. Deck surfaces in valley areas, fascia boards around the perimeter of the roof, and soffit boards are the most susceptible to dry rot.
Unless the roof inspector recommends a full replacement, most roofs can be repaired for a few hundred dollars. Alltex will provide an inspection and a cost proposal based on the inspector's report at no cost.
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