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How to Safely Inspect Your Roof

by | Jan 30, 2015 | Ask Rebuild Texas, Informational Post, Roof Repair

Henry David Thoreau and Grandpa both preached self-reliance so like the experts at the DIY Network we encourage friends to tackle any number of projects around the house. DIY projects allow homeowners to often save money and provide a great sense of accomplishment; a job well done is priceless.

On the other hand Henry David Thoreau was known for his commonsense and was also famous for saying, “Beware of all enterprises that require a new set of clothes.” Trust me; you should be dressed head to toe in an expensive set of safety gear to safely climb high pitched Texas roofs so even the most self-reliant, Thoreau lovin’ homeowners can feel good about calling us for a free roof inspection. Stories that start with, “After the storm I climbed up on my tall, steep and slippery roof…” often don’t end well.

While we never advocate for homeowners to climb on top of their roof, the good news is we can provide a few tips that will allow you to safely look for signs of possible roof damage so you’ll know if it’s time to call us for a free roof inspection. One tip is a teaching from my youth that I learned quite by accident.

When I was very young Santa brought me a pair of binoculars one Christmas morning. One of the first wild things I observed was a beautiful Northern Cardinal perched on a roof vent. With my super powered vision, I noticed the roof vent had a ding on it. Since I was young I wondered if one of Santa’s reindeer dinged it upon landing or takeoff.

Homeowners can take a lesson from my Christmas story and learn to safely look for signs of damage from the ground using a pair of binoculars. A word of caution before we get started, anytime you look through optics never look toward the sun as it can cause immediate and permanent blindness so even this manner of inspecting your roof has some risk.

Also, the best way to become familiar with your roof through binoculars is to start this practice when the roof is new or before any major storm so that you can get an image in your mind of what it should look like. Then after each storm from the ground use binoculars to scan the roof to see if anything has changed. Roofs have a naturally uniform appearance so you’re looking for outliers, anything that looks a bit out of place.

From the ground you might not be able to see your entire roof but you can usually see a portion of it. Look for any obvious wear, curls, cracks, missing or loose shingles. Also look for missing paint or dings on any trim or vents on your roof.

Depending on your home’s design, second level windows may provide a bird’s eye view of a lower roof gutter when safely looking down from a second story window. If you see granules in the gutter after a storm you very likely have serious roof damage so please don’t hesitate to call us for a no obligation free roof inspection.

Granules provide protection for the shingle by reflecting both UV and heat away from your roof. Besides protecting the asphalt shingle from excessive heat, they’re also largely responsible for the energy savings your roof provides. When a storm causes granule loss, the damage to the shingle is usually not apparent to the untrained eye.

Because roofs that suffer granular loss may not start to leak right away, homeowners often have a false sense of security and delay filing an insurance claim. After any storm, or anytime just for peace of mind, don’t hesitate to call us for a no obligation, free roof inspection.

After a storm you can also look for any hail dings on cars and damage to stained fences. Hail dings also show up on downspouts, gutters and trim on roof systems. A sure telltale sign it’s time to call us for an inspection is anytime green leaves or branches are on the ground after a storm. Normally green leaves don’t fall off in mass during most storms so anytime your yard looks like it’s fall in the wrong season, it’s time to schedule an inspection.

Hail that dings cars, shreds leaves off trees or scuffs a fence and removes stain most likely has damaged every 3-tab builder grade asphalt roof in the neighborhood but even homes with 30 year architectural shingles and metal roofs should also be inspected by pros after any significant storm. Broken window seals, damaged window screens or siding also mean likely damage to most roofs.

From inside the home, any spots on your ceiling are nearly always a sign of water damage and likely a roof leak if the spots get worse after a storm. A small roof leak may only require a minor flashing repair but left unattended, it will certainly result in extensive and costly damage. Please call us immediately if you have any signs of a roof leak. Constant water dripping from your ceiling during blue sky conditions may be due to a leaking water heater or HVAC units in the attic and likely an emergency situation that requires water to be turned off or attic HVAC drain pipes to be serviced.

Since we always offer free, no obligation roof inspections, there’s really no reason not call us to schedule an inspection. Even if you could get on the roof, we have the expertise and safety gear to better handle this project. Most importantly, we know what to look for and can help you effectively communicate with your insurance company.

We’re local and often available the same day or the following day for an inspection. Please call us today to schedule a free, no obligation roof inspection.

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