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A Complete Guide to Post-Winter Roof Inspections

Sunday Odudu Bio
A professional doing a post-winter roof inspection.
Skipping a post-winter roof inspection may result in unexpected repair bills. Protect your home by learning how to spot and address potential issues early with my comprehensive guide.

A post-winter roof inspection is not just a routine task; it's essential for maintaining your home's structural integrity—especially after enduring harsh winter conditions such as snow, ice, and cold winds. Doing this check can also help protect your investment and make sure you meet your home warranty requirements.

As an insurance producer and renovation specialist with a deep understanding of how home warranties work, I'm here to explain everything you need to know about post-winter roof inspections, including what's involved and why they're important for your home's upkeep.

»Just bought a new house? Ask these 10 questions before purchasing a home warranty.

What Is a Roof Inspection?

A roof inspection involves a professional checking your home's covering for any damage or wear. It's wise to have these assessments done regularly to ensure your roof stays in tip-top shape. They're also a good idea when buying a home or if you think there might be existing issues.

An inspector will make sure the canopy is structurally sound, the materials are in good condition, and there's no damage inside. These appraisals also confirm that your roof is functioning properly and can help you avoid common but expensive repair costs down the line.

» Want repair coverage? Try Liberty Home Guard and First American Home Warranty.

What Is Included in a Roof Inspection?

Roof inspections cover several areas, including visual assessments, interior checks, and professional examinations.

  • Visual inspections: The roofer goes up to your house's covering to look for clear signs of damage or issues on the exterior, such as missing shingles, cracks, or holes. This helps identify problems but doesn't give a full picture, so a detailed check inside is also necessary.
  • Interior checks: The roofer looks inside the house for signs of trouble, like water stains on walls or ceilings, which likely mean leaks are happening. They also check the attic for water damage, mold, or insulation concerns. These appraisals help identify leaks but can't assess the actual canopy materials and structure.
  • Structural assessments: The inspector examines the roof structure, including rafters, trusses, and decking, to ensure everything is stable. They look for issues such as uneven ceilings and exterior walls that lean or tilt. The examination also covers the roof's soffits, fascia, gutters, skylights, chimneys, and vents.

» Discover 10 essential things to note about your roof warranty.

Other Types of Roof Inspections You Should Consider

Ensuring your roof stays in good shape is essential for your home's overall well-being. By having regular checks, you can spot small issues early on. Here's a look at other types of inspections that can help keep your roof in the best condition:

  • Infrared moisture inspections use high-quality infrared cameras to find moisture or changes in temperature in the roof materials, helping to spot hidden water damage that could cause rot or mold.
  • Drone roof assessments provide a bird's–eye view to identify damage or issues that experts might miss in regular checks, especially in hard-to-reach places or tall buildings.
  • Post-storm or disaster checks allow experts to inspect the roof for damage like missing shingles or leaks, which you need to address quickly.
  • Pre-purchase or pre-listing examinations involve thorough inspections of the roof's condition and help you calculate any repair costs. This review sometimes includes taking shingle samples to evaluate the structure underneath.
  • Warranty or insurance claim appraisals are important for warranty or insurance claims. They help you document any damage covered by policies and determine repair or replacement costs.
  • Comprehensive or detailed reviews look over the whole covering, including the structure underneath, insulation, and airflow, to catch any problems.

Home warranty companies like Choice Home Warranty and Select Home Warranty can also play a significant role in this process. They have plans that may cover repair or replacement costs needed after an inspection, giving you more security.

Post-Winter Inspections and Home Warranties

Having your roof checked after winter is vital for keeping your home warranty valid and protecting your investment. It's also one of the most cost-effective ways to modernize the exterior of your home. Plus, fixing any damage early can help ensure successful claims without issues, so you get coverage repairs when necessary.

When choosing a home warranty provider like American Home Shield or Home Warranty of America, consider what they cover, their reputation, service quality, and the warranty agreement details. Know what's excluded and keep records of all inspections and repairs, especially if you're thinking about buying solar panels and a battery system for your home.

This preparation helps prevent unexpected problems and ensures you get the coverage you expect from your home warranty, offering peace of mind for future issues.

» Check out our best home warranties for homeowners.

7 Signs of Roof Damage to Watch for in Post-Winter Inspections

After winter, you need to check your roof for any signs of wear so you can keep your home safe. Here are some things to look out for:

  1. Water stains: Look for signs of leaks on ceilings, walls, or in the attic.
  2. Shingle problems: Check for any loose, cracked, or missing shingles.
  3. Sagging: Notice any sagging areas from heavy snow or ice, which could mean your roof has structural issues.
  4. Ice dams: Keep an eye out for ice forming at the roof's edge, which can cause water to back up.
  5. Blocked gutters: Make sure gutters are clear of debris and ice to avoid water damage.
  6. Shingle granules: Excessive granule loss from asphalt shingles might indicate underlying roof deterioration.
  7. Flashing: Check the areas around chimneys, vents, and skylights for any wear that could lead to leaks.

Call in the Professionals for a Deep Dive

A professional roof inspection involves hiring a certified contractor to conduct a comprehensive workup of your roof. It's best if reputable organizations like the National Roof Certification and Inspection Association and the National Roofing Contractors Association accredit them.

During the inspection, they'll closely examine the canopy's surface, flashing, nails, and support structure to evaluate how it's holding up. This thorough check gives you a detailed picture of the roof's health and any necessary repairs.

Be Proactive in Caring for Your Roof

Prioritizing post-winter roof inspections is an integral part of your home's upkeep. It safeguards your house's structural integrity and ensures the longevity of your roof. By getting appraisals done on time and fixing any problems, you can avoid costly repairs and feel confident that your home is well-protected.

» Follow these tips to add value to your property.


Why do I need a roof inspection?

Preventative roof maintenance is critical because minor issues can turn into big, expensive repairs or might even require a complete roof replacement if you don't address them. And 49% of Americans can't afford this, as they can't even cover a $400 emergency.

How often should I schedule a roof inspection?

I highly recommend scheduling roof inspections after any severe weather, particularly post-winter. That way, you can spot and fix any damage early, avoiding larger and more costly repairs later.

How much do roof inspections cost?

On average, roof inspections can cost anywhere from $75 to $900. But, many roofing companies offer free assessments to identify potential issues. What you'll pay depends on how thorough the inspection is, the style and size of your roof, and what it's made of.

What's the difference between home inspections vs. roof inspections?

While general home inspections provide an overview of a property's condition, roof checks focus specifically on the canopy's integrity and any potential damages. They cover all aspects of roof health, so having a separate roof assessment is important for detailed upkeep.

Sunday Odudu Bio
Sunday Odudu, a top 10 writer and an expert in home warranties, has over a decade of experience in sales and public administration. As a seasoned insurance producer and former lead renovation specialist, he has collaborated with start-ups, global corporations, and governmental bodies.