Routine inspections are important if you want to extend the life of your roof and prevent possible roof disasters.

However, not all roof inspections are the same. A qualified professional roof inspector will follow certain steps to find hidden problems and damage to your roof.

Here’s what you can expect from a professional:

Reviewing Warranties and Guarantees

The first thing a roofing inspector will do is find out if there are any warranties or guarantees for the roof. Inspectors do this because only certain work is allowed under warranties and guarantees. If work is done that is not allowed it can invalidate the warranty for the roof. Not only do they do this to protect the warranty, they do it to determine what type of work should be done.

Reviewing Roof Records and Plans

An inspector will typically ask for documentation of the roof that will tell them any previous work or repairs have been done on the roof. They will make sure to check these previously repaired areas to ensure they don’t need any further repair. They will also look at plans to identify any areas they need to pay special attention to during the inspection. They might even consider talking to employees or residents of the building to find any problems they may have noticed. Doing all of this helps them to become familiar with the roof and identify possible issues before even looking at the roof.

After an inspector has gathered the above information, they will begin the actual roof inspection. The following are some of the most important things that will be covered during the inspection:

  1. Interior Inspections – Not only do we provide the fall protection and safety equipment, but we also require all employees do safety training before ever stepping on the roof. It’s important that all employees who will be on the roof understand the possible hazards they will run into, as well as how to prevent any possible falls or injuries. Things we train them on are fall protection, heat protection and cold protection. We also have a no tolerance rule for horseplay, as this can put everyone at risk on the roof.
  2. Membrane and Seams – One of the first things that will be checked on the roof is if the membrane and the seams have any defects. Seams are typically the weakest point and often where problems first start. Once the seams weaken the entire roof system can fail, that’s why its important for the inspector to check that they are not coming apart or deteriorating. 
  3. Joints, Corners, Flashing and Edges – Overtime flashing may loosen, causing water damage. An inspector will check the flashing to ensure it is properly directing water flow away from the interior of the building. Any joints or corners around ventilation and chimneys will be examined for cracks or weak points. Edges of roofs where different segments come together will also be checked thoroughly as edges are very vulnerable spots. 
  4. Gutters and Drains – Draining systems play a crucial part in keeping water off the roof. Gutters, drains, and scuppers will be checked for any blockage or damage. If any blockage is found it needs to be taken care of right away to keep water off the roof. 
  5. Roof Features and Equipment – Features such as skylights, HVAC or any other roof penetrations need to be checked to make sure seams are watertight and any equipment hasn’t caused any damage to the roof membrane.


Once the inspection is complete, the inspector will give you an overview of what they found. They will inform you of any damage they found and the best way to go about fixing it. They will also let you know if they found anything that could lead to a future problem and what should be done to fix and prevent future problems.