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How to Perform a Roof Condition Index Assessment

Score your roof on this 1 to 100 scale, and that'll help you determine whether it's time to replace, restore, or repair and maintain.

By Nicholas J. O'Hare  
OTHER PARTS OF THIS ARTICLEPt. 1: How to Prevent Roofing ProblemsPt. 2: Understanding 3 Common Roofing ProblemsPt. 3: This PagePt. 4: 8 Tips for Roofing Preventive Maintenance Inspections

The first step in correcting problems and determining the correct course of action is to evaluate every component and determine the current condition of your existing roofing system. There are good reasons to have an unbiased professional consultant perform this evaluation. By looking at existing plans and specifications and comparing them to current roof conditions, a professional roofing consultant will be able to identify defects, damage, and degradation, analyze data, and prioritize roofing areas utilizing a roof condition index rating. Most roof condition index systems use a scale of 0 to 100, with 0 being failed and 100 being excellent and are divided into ranges like these:

• 0 to 30 – Replace. Once a roof reaches replacement-level rating, you are looking at significant expenditure to get it back to an acceptable condition. Maintenance and repairs will be ineffective; you might as well be using money as a water stop. Repairs should only be completed on an emergency basis until a full replacement can be completed.

• 50 – Restore. Roofs in this range are at about the midpoint in their life expectancy. An often forgotten about but highly impactful option for these roofs is restoration. A well-timed professional restoration can double the life for existing roofs for a quarter of the cost of a full replacement. It is critical to catch roofs in this range while they are still worth extending. 

• 70 to 100 – Repair and maintain. Excellent to fair condition roofs still have good life cycle remaining, and it makes financial and operational sense to invest in them. These roofs should be put on a preventive maintenance program to maximize their usability. Semi-annual inspections and repairs will suffice. 

For roofs between 30 and 50, a range of factors (such as the capital plans of the organization and specific problems with the roof) should be weighed to decide whether to replace or restore the roof. The same is true for the choice between restore and repair/maintain for roofs with scores between 50 and 70.

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  posted on 9/25/2019   Article Use Policy

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