Drone inspections are being performed in almost every industry and are an excellent tool for home inspectors. With that being said, I do understand a drone inspection also has its limitations, because of that I will make every effort to do a boots-on-the-roof inspection. Walking a roof allows a home inspector to better examine roofing materials and their integrity. The ability to use additional senses, such as touch, enables me to better diagnose defects.
Some homes might have roofs that are not safe to walk on or are hard to access because they are too high, too steep, or too slippery due to weather conditions. Some roofing materials, like tiles, can have a significant amount of wear and tear, which could make them less safe to inspect, or too brittle to walk on.
Becoming a certified FAA Unmanned Aircraft Pilot gives me the ability to use a drone and get to those hard-to-reach locations. It gives me a bird’s-eye view of what’s happening, and I can safely get a good look at potential cracks, wear, and other damage.
However, there are some limitations to drone use. Trees, power lines and proximity of neighboring homes are a few things that can restrict flights. Many types of weather conditions can also have a negative impact on a drone. Extreme cold or extreme heat, as well as rain, snow, or wind, can impact your drone’s capabilities and potentially damage it. For example, if moisture gets inside a drone, it can severely impact its electrical components, and cause a crash. While cold temperatures drastically reduce the lifespan of a battery, which can limit the flying times and the range of a drone.
The FAA also regulates airspaces where drone use is restricted or prohibited, generally around airports. Additionally, Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs) define a certain area of airspace where air travel is limited for a period. Examples include major sporting events, presidential movements, or security-sensitive areas designated by federal agencies.
With all this being said, one way or another, I will give you a great roof inspection.