One of the great things about being a home inspector is that there is an endless supplyof things to get ones Underoos all in a bunch about! (Those of you that had kids growing up in the 70's will remember Underoos---maybe they are still around?). This pet peeve is another roofing issue. On almost every roof pipes have to go through the roof, whether it is the electrical mast or the plumbing venting.
Sometime I will blog about some "crazy and/or funky" ways people have flashed these pipe penetrations, but today my peeve involves the use of "approved" types of flashings----but with no consideration for the type of roof they are being used on. There are, for example, rubber boot type flashings that typically have a life of about 15-20 years (if you are lucky and hold your breath just right). Why would anyone consider using these types of flashings on a roof designed to last 20-40 years? I see this ALLthe time . Here are a couple of pictures of the cheapo rubber boot flashings:
The one on the left is installed on a 20-30 year roof, the one on the right is most likely consistent with the expected life of wood shingles---but is installed just plain funky (remember when wood shakes used to be considered a 50 year roof?----well neither do I, but I have been told that they could last that long---in the good ole days).
The flashings I like to see are lead---and they are a "beautiful thing!" Not only do they provide a very long lived solution to the problem but even have nice counter flashings to finish off the top. Sometimes roofers will merely fold the flashing inside the pipe, but the counter-flashings look really cool and are necessary if the pipe sticks past the flashing. The two pictures on the left show nice versions of this. The picture on the right shows one where the counter-flashing is missing.
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WA State, Home Inspector Advisory Licensing Board