Good home roof self-inspection habits could yield short and long term financial rewards, including keeping the value of your home strong. But, what should you look for while inspecting your house’s roof? Of all the signs that your roof is healthy absence of leaks is consistently an indicator of good roof structure. Additional signs that your house roof is in good shape include:
- Healthy shingles. Roof shingles should not be missing, darkly stained or eroding. Roof shingles should also not be cracked, curled or cupped.
- Dry and clean exterior walls are other potential signs that your house roof is healthy. Wet or stained walls could be a sign that your roof is leaking.
- Ceilings that are free of water spots may be evidence that your roof does not have cracks or leaks. If you spot stains or spots in a room, consider inspecting your roof. See no damage, but the problem persists? It may be time to call a roofing contractor.
- When it rains, even during hard rains, if all rooms in your home, including your basement, remain dry, your roof could be in good condition.
- Age is another indicator that your roof may be healthy. Depending on the type of material your roof is made of, your roof could remain healthy for 15 to 25 years.
- Caulk is solid and not cracking.
- Moss and rust are not seen on the top or bottom of your roof.
- Vent pipes are free of rust.
- There are no dents or misshaped portions of the roof. Hailstorms and heavy snowfalls could cause a roof to dent or become misshaped. Consider inspecting your roof following a hard storm, as high winds, hail damage could lead to more troubling issues. To keep your roof healthy during winter, it’s advisable to leave a light layer of snow on the roof. But, you don’t want to leave several inches of snow on the roof for a prolonged period.
A fire retardant roof system could protect your entire home. The National Center for Biotechnology Information recommends a Class A fire rated roof system. If you are in the process of buying a house, ask the inspector to tell you the roof system class for the house you are thinking about purchasing. Pay attention to water stains on walls. You could also ask your realtor if the house has flooded before. If you’re a current homeowner, inspect your house roof at least once a year (and following a hard storm). Similar to an annual physical checkout with your physician, regular roof inspections can help you to spot erosion and damage early, potentially saving you from costly roof repairs or roof replacement.