Roofing 101

Roof Inspection Checklist


Why Do I Need A Roof Inspection?

At IKO, we recommend that homeowners have their roof inspected on a regular basis. It’s like going to the doctor for an annual check-up. You may catch potential problems early and potentially prevent them from becoming more serious.

While we recognize that repairing your roof is never convenient; it pales in comparison to the cost and inconvenience of ignoring the impact of what your roof has endured over the years.

The Older Your Roof, the More Vulnerable it Becomes.

Even if your roof and its shingles appear to look fine, a careful inspection may reveal less obvious damage, so don’t let a superficial appearance lull you into a false sense of security.

Some contractors provide a basic roof inspection, which consists of examining the exterior of the roof (sometimes only from street level) and basic components such as flashings. While this is necessary, a more thorough inspection can help identify areas of concern and items that could potentially lead to further (and more costly) damage.

The checklist below provides a good summary of both exterior and interior inspection tips. Please consult a professional roof inspector to complete a proper roof inspection. Do not attempt to complete the checklist yourself.

Exterior Roof Inspection

  • Blistered, curled or split shingles.
  • Loose or missing shingles.
  • Loose or exposed nails.
  • Improperly seated nails that “popped”.
  • Broken or loose shingles at the ridge and hip lines.
  • Signs of missing caulk to seal flashing.
  • Rusty or corroded metal flashing.
  • Damaged or missing flashing.
  • Sagging on the ridges.
  • Broken seals on shingles.
  • Excessive granule loss on shingles.
  • Examine chimney for cracks.
  • Rubber boots at top of pipes for dry rot.
  • Review gutters and downspouts.
  • Examine fascia board for any damage or rot.
  • Survey the condition of siding above the roof.
  • Gutters and eaves for proper shingle overhangs.

Interior Roof Inspection

  • Cracks on roof sheathing.
  • Measure and calculate proper attic ventilation.
  • Sagging decking (between rafters).
  • Outside light coming through.
  • Attic intake vents for proper ventilation.
  • Bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans for proper ventilation.
  • Leaks around vents, chimneys and other holes to the outside.
  • Signs of condensation, wet insulation, or mold.

To find a qualified, reputable roofing contractor in your area, click here.

Repairing your roof is never convenient, but it pales in comparison to the cost and inconvenience of ignoring the impact of what your roof has endured over the years. Direct sunlight, hail, wind, acid rain, ice, and snow will affect the condition of your home’s roof over time and affect its ability to shelter you from the elements. The older a roof is, the more sensitive it becomes to these factors. Many homeowners are surprised to learn that their roof is damaged, especially when the shingles appear to be fine. This video will focus on two areas relevant to the topic of roof inspection. The first will talk about the homeowner’s role as roof inspector and the things you should look for to maintain the life of your roof. The second speaks to the contractor’s role and the importance of working with a contractor who inspects your roof prior to their offering a proposal.

So, let’s first talk about the homeowner’s role. The National Roofing Contractors Association recommends a homeowner conducts inspections twice a year on their roof. Although it is always recommended that you seek the advice of a professional contractor, such as a Shield Pro Plus contractor, there are a few things homeowners can do to minimize problems and prolong the life of their roof. Before we get started, I do think it’s important to remind you that if you’re using a ladder, please be sure to follow the proper safety procedures. So, let’s say you find yourself up on the ladder cleaning your gutters or hanging the holiday lights, for example. You’re gonna want to look across your roof to see if you see any signs of shingles splitting, curling, or blistering. You’ll also want to check for areas where the shingles appear to be loose or missing, and you should also look for exposed nails that may have popped up due to the expansion and contraction of the roof deck. You can also check the interior of your roof in your attic or crawl space. You’ll obviously want to check for any signs of water damage, leaks, or daylight coming in. Dark wet spots on the interior sheathing is obviously not a good sign. You’ll also want to make sure that the insulation is not blocking any of the ventilation and check to make sure that your bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans are vented to the outside and not pumping warm moist air into your attic or crawl space. If you see any of these signs, you should make arrangements to have a professional roofing contractor come to your home to perform a more thorough inspection. Please keep in mind that these red flags don’t necessarily point to you having to replace your entire roof, it may be a very small problem that it’s very easy to fix. What’s important here is the fact that you made arrangements to fix the problem before it leads to further and more costly damage to your home

The second item I want to talk about is the roof inspection performed by your contractor. Some contractors provide a very basic inspection, which consists of examining the exterior of the roof, sometimes only from the street level. While this may be all that’s needed in some cases, it’s not safe to assume that it’s all that’s needed in all of the cases, which is why IKO recommends working with a contractor who provides a thorough roof inspection. Contractors who perform a more comprehensive roof inspection will be better able to determine exactly what is needed to provide the results and long-term performance you want from your new roof. One important example is ventilation. Your Roofing Contractor is going to need to measure and calculate the proper attic ventilation for your home’s shape and size. Improper roof ventilation may, among other things, escalate the shingle’s aging processes and adversely affect the shingle’s limited product warranty.

Small roofing problems have an uncanny ability of growing into a much larger and more expensive problem. This is why it’s important that homeowners take a proactive approach to roof inspections and work with the contractors who do the same. If you’re interested in having a contractor perform a roof inspection, please go to and contact a Shield Pro Plus contractor. Thank you for watching this video.