Inspecting an Asphalt Shingle Roof


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Surveying a shingle roof can be challenging – but every roofing contractor makes a final inspection of a newly-installed shingle roof, before ever leaving the property.  Here’s a few things that we look for: 

1 – Look for uniformity

From the ground, all of the shingles should appear to be laying down relatively flat.

On a brand new roof, it is common for some shingles to be sticking up a tiny bit; typically they will settle down soon. When walking around the entire home, the shingles should all be laid straight, and cut straight. The overall lines of the roof should be uniform.

2 – Check for debris

The roof should be free of debris – nails, shingle scraps, wrappers.  Most roofers will blow off a roof to ensure it is clean.

3 – Flashing and seam inspection

All the flashing must be inspected and any exposed nails must be well-caulked.  Make sure the shingles around any vent or plumbing stack flashing or furnace flashing are trimmed back properly.  If the shingles are not trimmed back enough, water can back up under the shingles.  All the flashing should be secure, and the flashing should be under the shingles above it, and over the shingles below it.

4 – Ridge cap completion

The ridge cap should, of course, be straight, and any exposed nails on the last piece of ridge cap must be caulked.  Starter strip should be used on all the eaves and gable ends.  Verify there is ice and water shield was used – Minnesota weather demands it.

5 – Nail patterns

In several random locations, we will lift up a shingle and verify the nailing pattern.  Manufacturers provide specifications that should be followed on nail type, size, and pattern. At this time we also make sure the shingles are adhering properly – based on how long ago the roof was installed.

6 – Gutters

If the house has gutters, make sure that on all the inside corners, the valley metal is cut back to allow water to go into the gutter.


At Midwest Roofing, Siding & Windows, we thoroughly inspect every roof that we install to ensure that it passes manufacturer specifications as well as local building codes. To learn more about our roofing systems, contact us today.

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