It's usually one of the last things we keep an eye on due to the 'out of sight, out of mind' mind-set, but a leaky, broken, or damaged roof can be a costly and timely expense to UK homeowners.
Roofing experts, Roof Stores, have found that the British public really aren’t very pro-active when it comes down to inspecting their roofs, with over half (57.4%) admitting they’d never inspected theirs.
Not only this, but around the same number said they’d never checked either their attic for leaks (56.9%) or have never cleared out their gutters (50.5%).
Why should you inspect your roof?
Roof systems can deteriorate from normal wear, severe weather conditions (e.g. wind and snow loads) building movement (e.g. settlement, material contraction/expansion) and even improper design, so it’s vital that you inspect your roof regularly in order to identify any issues that have developed or may soon occur.
How often should you inspect your roof?
Regular inspections of your roof will lead to early detection of problems. We advise that you perform annual formal visual roof inspections when your roof is free of snow and materials, and informal inspections after any severe weather conditions occur.
How much does it cost to repair water damage?
If you do not conduct regular inspections on your roof, guttering system and attic space, you could find yourself having to pay out a substantial amount of money to repair any resulting water damage. According to studies, the average homeowner spends between £850 - £3,200 repairing water damage, which can be easily prevented with regular inspections.
Inspecting different roof types
It’s important to understand that different roof types require different inspection techniques and can be susceptible to different issues. Below we have a guide to how to inspect different roof types. If you’re looking for a more in-depth guide to different types of roof tiles and slates, you can find a comprehensive guide here.
When asphalt shingles age they become brittle and the granules can detach from the shingles. Inspect for bare spots as well as torn or warped shingles.
Commonly steel, copper, aluminium, or galvanized iron. Most metal roofs have a life expectancy of about 50 years. Perforations, pits, rust, or corrosion can help determine the age of the roof. Check the seams, corners, and joints for loose, dried out, or peeling caulk or another seam material.
Slate and/or clay tile roofing
These normally have around 75 years or lifetime warranties, but they can leak sooner depending on the quality of workmanship. When inspecting, you should avoid walking on these materials as they can break under the weight.
Wooden shakes or shingles
Again, avoid walking on this material. Instead, simply inspect using binoculars or from a ladder. Weather will deteriorate wood shakes and shingles over time. See if there are missing, rotted, warped, or broken shingles or shakes. If a third or more of the roof is damaged, the whole roof needs replacing.