Inspecting a roof is a time consuming and gruelling job, even in the most suitable weather conditions. In the high temperatures experienced during a typical Northern Territory summer, however, roof inspection becomes much more problematic. For those working in the construction industry, the effects of the sun beating down on a roof are all too familiar.
Certain roofing materials do not fare well under the sun, which means that repair or replacement is necessary to maintain the integrity of the roof. For roofers and building inspectors, the challenge of accessing the roof under these conditions is often a dangerous one.
Roofing Materials and Heat Exposure
Most modern roofing materials in Australia are built with energy efficiency in mind. The fact remains, however, that there are dangers associated with accessing any roof during summer conditions. In the case of materials less suited to hot weather, there is the issue of the structural integrity of a roof damaged by the sun. With roofing materials which are designed for the tropics, the very properties which keep the home cool can make the roof difficult to access for builders or inspectors.
Shingled/tiled roofs – During the hotter months, some shingled or tile roofing can become warped through prolonged exposure to the sun. Warping will lead to tiles beginning to curl or crack. Furthermore, the problem for roofers and inspectors often begins before signs of damage are easily noticeable. These tiles are a safety hazard, which could lead to serious injury or death if a section of compromised roof collapses under foot.
Tropical Roofing – One of the most advantageous properties of tropical roofing material is keeping heat out of the home. That heat has to go somewhere, so it is either reflected or locked in to the roofing material. Both scenarios result in a roof that is virtually impossible to stand on or touch, which makes working on or inspecting the roof challenging to say the least.
Photography through the use of highly sophisticated drones is a more effective and safe method of inspecting roofs during the summer months. There is no need for the inspector to physically access the roof. The drone is controlled by a team of qualified pilots from the ground. Detailed pictures are taken of even area of the roof, including areas which would be impossible to access on foot, and the inspector is able to review the results from the safety of workstation.
Thermal imaging cameras can also be used to identify any compromise in the integrity of roofing materials, without a living person risking life or limb up on the roof. Every image is taken in high definition, so even the tiniest anomaly is easily picked out during inspection. Rather than individual photographs of the roof, taken by hand, the inspector has a complete picture will makes the job of identifying issues much less time intensive – yet – much more efficient.
So, no matter how hot the sun is beating down, you won’t have to put off inspection until the heat cools off. A drone is indifferent to surface heat of your roof. An inspector will simply work in conjunction with the drone pilots to capture the images that he or she needs.
As new potential benefits of drone photography emerge, building inspectors such as Houspect will be at the forefront of integrating the available technologies. Are inspectors are already offering huge time and cost benefits to our customers, thanks to the use of drone photography. We are fully invested in this technology and the savings it allows us to pass onto our customers. Watch this space for more news on drone photography, and how it is revolutionising how building inspections are carried out.