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Our 20-point roof inspection checklist

  1. Missing shingles, tiles, slates or nails?
  2. Cracked, curled or missing shingles?
  3. Lots of fine, gravel-like granules in the gutters?
  4. Dark, bare spots on your roof?
  5. Water flowing properly through the drainage system?
  6. Cracked sheathing?
  7. Gutters securely fastened?
  8. Cracks or open seams in your gutters or downspouts?
  9. Cracks in the mortar and bricks on your chimney?
  10. Bricks missing in your chimney?
  11. Caulking missing around chimneys and vents?
  12. Signs of water damage at eaves and overhangs?
  13. Roof ridge appear straight?
  14. Roof surface appear to be flat without sags or dips?
  15. Flashing installed properly?
  16. Damaged or missing flashings?
  17. Damage to valley flashing material?
  18. Water pooling in some areas of a flat roof?
  19. Rotted or warped wood shakes or shingles?
  20. Caulking used to seal flashing material damaged or missing?

Roofing Hot-Spots

The "Top 13" most problematic areas

  1. Chimneys Damaged or improperly installed flashing around chimneys is the number one cause of leaks in the home. Even a hairline crack above the flashing can cause a serious water leak.
  2. Loose Roofing Nails A single loose nail that has managed to back itself out of the roof sheathing can be the cause a roof leak.
  3. Bare, Cracked or Missing Shingles Water leaks can be caused by cracked or missing shingles. Sometimes missing gravel-like granules on the shingles (known as “bare spots”) can also cause leaks. If they have not caused a leak yet, you can bet they will in the very near future.
  4. Furnace Flashing Furnace vents usually have a metal storm collar, and if the collar becomes loose, water leaks will occur.
  5. Roof Valleys Damaged metal flashing or rolled roofing can cause water leaks. Some builders simply lace the shingles together, failing to properly cut them, which inevitably causes water leaks at the roof valleys.
  6. Plumbing Vent Flashings Some plumbing vent flashing utilizes aluminum and rubber seals. Cracks in the rubber seal around a plumbing pipe are often caused by ultraviolet radiation, and these types of seals will fail within about 10 years of installation.
  7. Head Wall Flashings When the roof stops at a vertical wall, a head wall flashing is used to prevent water from leaking into the house. The flashing should extend over the shingles at least three inches and must bend and extend one inch into a mortar joint.
  8. Wall Step Flashing Step flashings are used where a roof climbs alongside a vertical wall. Rust or holes in these flashings can easily cause roof leaks.
  9. Leaks Caused by Ice Dams Ice dams can block the flow of the water down the roof and cause water leaks, especially at the edge of the roof. To prevent this from happening, install ice dam membranes under your shingles.
  10. Leaks Cause by Wind-blown Rain You will see this type of water leak during rains that are coupled with heavy winds. To prevent this from happening, install tar paper and ice dam membranes under your shingles.
  11. Cracked Chimney Bricks Chimney bricks can develop cracks and cause water leaks inside your fireplace.
  12. Missing or Cracked Siding above Roof This will cause water to enter behind head flashings and then into your home.
  13. Water Damaged Caused by Water Condensation in Attic Improper attic ventilation causes water condensation in your attic and, over time, leads to major damage to your roof and attic insulation if it is not addressed.

What Does Your Roof Need?

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