Can You Trust Your Roof Inspection to a Drone Service?

Until you’ve had a roof inspection, you will be wise not to invest in a new home, even if you think you’ve found your dream house. After all, you may not want to buy a home with weak or damaged roofing, lest you find yourself with hefty bills to repair leaks and structural damage.

Drone Roof Inspection

One of the latest methods home inspectors are using to evaluate a roof involves using a drone. This approach is becoming common in Utah.

But roofing contractors perform this critical task differently, preferring a close-up, hands-on examination. Can you trust a drone inspection? Or should you hire a roofing contractor instead?

How Drone-Based Roof Inspections Work

Today, many home inspectors don’t actually get up on the roof to check its integrity. And many of those who do climb up may stay on the ladder and look at the roof from there. The high cost of liability insurance is the most common reason cited for this worrisome trend.

So to prevent injury to the inspector — and to prevent damage to the home — many roof inspections are performed with a drone.

How does that work? A drone pilot flies a quadcopter, or a helicopter-like machine, that’s outfitted with a camera. The drone can be adjusted to view different angles, and it can hover to zoom in on the roof. As the drone flies, it takes photographs to allow the home inspector to evaluate the roof’s condition.

How Roof Inspections Work with a Professional Roofing Contractor

A professional contractor doesn’t rely on drone photos to determine the structural integrity of your roof.

Roofing contractors actually climb up on the roof to look at the roofing materials, underlayment and, if applicable, the roof decking itself.

During a professional roof inspection, the contractor also evaluates the condition of the flashing around the chimneys and vents as well as the soundness of the rain gutters, drains and downspouts. He also examines the deck and structural supports from the attic side.

If everything looks good, the contractor issues a certificate stating that the roof is not in need of repairs. This certification is typically valid for two to five years.

Results of a Professional Roof Inspection vs. a Drone Inspection

A drone inspection gives results that are easy for home inspectors to review. And pictures often speak louder than words. With a drone inspection, home buyers and sellers can see any roof damage for themselves.

That said, relying on a drone service may not be the best plan. Overhead photos cannot adequately assess any underlayment or deck issues, nor can drones check from inside for water damage or structural support problems.

A roofing contractor will perform a much more in-depth analysis of the roof, manually testing the strength and flexibility of the shingles or tiles as well the other materials. Drone pictures can let you see the rooftop, but only a professional roof inspection will provide you a clear view of the structure’s condition.

Home buyers and sellers throughout Utah trust the experts at Knockout Roofing for professional roof inspections. To schedule yours, contact our Salt Lake City office today.