How To Use Drones Doing Roof Inspection

Like so many industries, roof inspection is becoming another profitable market for using drones. Few industries can profit like roof inspections because there are such dangers involved in this industry. Drones offer roof inspections in a safe and more efficient way.

The knowledge of the condition of the roof of a house is necessary to homeowners not only so any future damage such as leaks can be anticipated, but it is also one of the first things home-owners think of when selling a house. After all, roofs are expensive and therefore play a large role in determining the commercial value of a house. This is also what the condition of the roof is important to real estate agents who are assisting in selling the house, and also why interested buyers need to know since they are looking at the prospect of buying the house.

In considering the cost of roofs, a professional roof inspection is essential so that a thorough inspection is done to ensure that the estimate will be accurate before a contract is agreed upon.

Because roof insurance services are often requested by insurance adjusters when home owners make insurance claims, home insurance typically provides coverage for roofing damage, whether it is the result of typical wear from regular weather conditions or because of damage done by “Mother Nature,” such as hurricanes, tornadoes, typhoons, etc. A professional inspection will be helpful to an insurance adjuster who has to assess the damages and decide how much his/her insurance company is liable.

It is also more common now for roof repair companies to offer a roof inspection as part of their services, which helps clients know, ahead of time, the amount of work that is needed.

Roof Inspections

Just as many homes have their annual spring cleaning, it is a good practice to have an annual, or at least semi-annual, inspection of the condition of the roof. Like other aspects of ownership of a house, these are some of the things that owners should consider as pre-emptive measures to make sure their house is in good condition. In the long run, it also saves money. The more wear-and-tear that is unattended, the greater the cost in the long run.

One of the newer applications of roof inspection is solar panel installation. Solar panel installation services require companies to have detailed roof inspection reports which allow the companies to show the clients the options and provide accurate cost estimates for their service.

The following is some of the information included in a roof report:

  • Geometry of roof
  • Features of roof
  • Square footage
  • Surface area
  • Edges
  • Pitch
  • Slope

Larger homes with complex roofs usually include several facets, planes, and edges that can be challenging using tape measurements. Drones, however, can provide these measurements accurately and automatically.


The amount of equipment needed to conduct a roofing inspection, with conventional methods is considerable: ladders, cameras, and various tape measurements. In addition, and most importantly, there is always a risk factor when height is involved. There is climbing of a ladder or ladders (dependent upon how steep the roof is or areas of the roof) and walking on the roof.

It is estimated that drone inspections are three times faster than traditional inspections. The advantages of drone inspections is obvious: they are totally safe and as easy as they are quick.

The software (3D) that is now available to drones provides a significantly higher level of detail than a series of photos can capture. In addition to measurements, such as length, area, and slopes, that can be captured by traditional methods, drone inspections generate cloud point data that can be used to reproduce a high-resolution 3D model so that roof inspectors can go over the results with the homeowner and/or real estate agent.

With continued improvement in technology, it is now possible to have roof inspections in which drones can assess the quality of the insulation of houses. Drones equipped with infrared cameras, provide thermal imaging that can identify places in the roofing of houses which are likely areas with poor insulation and thus loss of heat.

Compared to other commercial drone applications, drone roof inspections are one of the simplest in that they do not require great knowledge of either operating drones, nor of technological sophistication. Basic knowledge in both areas is sufficient.


Hopefully the days of homeowners climbing up ladders, and insurance companies sending their workers up on ladders, are coming to a close!Benefits, such as quality of data, efficiency, speed, cost-effectiveness, and, most of all, safety, are reasons that the roof inspection industry should continue to grow and eventually become a common practice in our society.

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