When you hire a roofing contractor, and he or she assesses your walls and foundation, you might be wondering why. After all, a roofer only works on roofs, so why would they be concerned about your walls and foundation? Actually, there are some very good reasons for this, as you will see.
Your Walls Support the Trusses of the New Roof
The trusses of your new roof will sit right on, and be attached to, your home's walls. The wood inside your walls has to be solid, dry, and able to support the truss beams. If there is any dry rot, excess moisture, termites that have eaten through, or mold and mildew, your walls can only support the weight of your old roof without collapsing. Additionally, there is not telling how much longer the damaged walls will support your old roof either.
It is the job of the contractor to ascertain:
- If the walls are sound
- How much weight the walls can support
- Which walls in your home are load-bearing so that the bulk of the weight of the new roof rests on these walls and not on weaker walls
Your Foundation Has to Support Everything Above It
Your roofing contractor also examines your foundation because your foundation is expected to support everything above it, including the new roof. When your foundation has cracks or obvious breaks in it, it may be a contributing factor to other structural issues, such as those you are experiencing with your roof. Problems with your foundation may also contribute to ongoing repairs on the new roof if you do not correct and repair the issues with your foundation.
- Very large open cracks in the foundation give rise to splits all the way up your wall.
- The weight of the roof pushes down on these cracks.
- The roof buckles where the large cracks in the foundation have developed, causing extensive damage to your roof.
For this reason, your roofing contractor needs to asses the foundation to make sure there are no major structural problems and that what problems do exist will not affect the new roof. If the foundation is sound, then everything above it will be supported as it should be. Since your roofing contractor probably does not do foundation work, he or she may insist that you use, recommend that you use, or refer you to a foundation contractor before the roofing contractor will start work on the roof.