Tips with Tim: What to Look for When Inspecting a Roof 

A well-maintained roof is crucial for the safety and longevity of your structure. Regular roof inspections are essential to detect and address any issues before they escalate into costly repairs or disruptions to your operations; however, inspecting a roof can be tricky. Because many of the most pressing roofing problems are below the surface of the roof, rarely is finding these problems as easy as simply looking at them. We sat down with Tim Nick, our Senior Product Manager, to discuss his experience and tips on inspecting roofs. 

Tim has been in the roofing industry for over 30 years. He started his career as a South Florida roofing contractor and then moved to building spray foam trailers. Throughout his time in the business, he has always enjoyed working with and training contractors across the county. Tim is a wealth of knowledge and is always looking to help others grow their business. To see the full interview, watch the video below.

1. Start with Safety

Before beginning the actual inspection of a roof, we must make sure we are following safe roofing practices. This includes items such as wearing proper clothing, ensuring adequate safety equipment and procedures, as well as being mindful of any hazards on the actual roof—one key hazard being skylights. By first ensuring that the space you are working in is safe, you can better focus on detecting issues and points of concern with the roof.  

2. Understanding the Roof’s History 

While conducting an inspection, gather all available documentation and information related to the roof. This includes maintenance records, repair history, and warranties. If not available—and often they are not—speak to the property owner to better understand what might be under the surface of the roof. Understanding the roof’s history will provide valuable insights into previous issues and allow for a more targeted inspection. Importantly, you may be able to note any recurring problems or areas that require special attention based on past records. 

3. Physical Issues with Roofs

Perhaps one of the easiest aspects of inspecting a roof is locating the surface-level physical problems affecting the structure. Some common issues include: 

  • Surface Blistering
  • Areas of Heavy Ponding 
  • Identifying Previous Coating 
  • Worn Coatings 
  • Wet Foam

These items and more are a part of the larger story of the roof’s history. Not only are they problems within themselves, but they also point to larger problems with a roof that can oftentimes be found below the surface.

4. Under the Roof’s Surface 

Have a sinking feeling in your roof? Time for a core sample! Understanding what is under the surface of the roof is extremely important when searching for problems. Some of the largest problems are not always visible from the roof’s surface. Issues involving poorly done installations and repairs are extremely common and can be very well hidden. Moisture problems can also be hidden in the roof’s surface. We recommend using a core saw to cut sections of the roof open to look inside for signs of deterioration.  

5. Communicate Your Findings

Once your inspection is complete, it is up to you to explain your findings to the property owner and recommend a course of action. At Rugged Coatings, we want all contractors using our product to complete a job to the highest level of quality. Every roofing job reflects your business’s expertise and our product’s dependability. We want to recommend a course of action that repairs or replaces a roof correctly and with longevity at the forefront of our work. Although temporary fixes and shoddy workmanship may be more checkbook friendly, we want our customers to be satisfied with our craftsmanship and see the value of a Rugged Roofing System.  

Through the help of Tim and our team of experts, we can ensure the quality of Rugged Coatings on your jobsite while working with you to inspect and identify outstanding problems on your prospective roofing job. Rugged Coatings is dedicated to helping you start and complete your jobs on time, safely, and successfully to help grow your business!