Company using drones to improve roof damage assessments


Many of us are still cleaning up after the recent storms. Besides trees and power lines, many residential and commercial roofs were damaged.

Don Kennedy Roofing is now using new drone technology that incorporates both visual and thermal infra-red imaging to assess roof damage.

They took Meteorologist Davis Nolan to a commercial building that was damaged during the weekend storms to show how the new technology works.

“This is the Mavic 2 Enterprise Dual drone which has a digital and thermal overlay,” explains Nick Warndorf with Don Kennedy Roofing. “So what we use it for is essentially a forensic investigation of roof systems with potential moisture intrusion. In this case, this is a roof that blew off from the heavy winds and storms that we had last weekend.”

On the building they surveyed with the drone, Warndorf said it looks like the direction of the wind “pulled from the corner of the roof and peeled it back like a wind sail on a ship.” He said you see damage like this when heavy winds come into contact with a loose roof membrane.

But there could also be water damage underneath the roofing material. That’s where thermal imaging comes into play.

“You can see a little bit of the moisture at the edges where there’s a temperature differential in between the two,” Warndorf said. “So the darker spot is the coolest spot, and the lighter spots white is the hottest. So, right in there between the two, that’s wet insulation underneath the roof membrane at the edge. You’d see it a lot better in the evening when the temperature has started to drop.”

This is the type of data Don Kennedy’s Consulting Services division will use to write reports, and if necessary, build cases in defense.

“We’ll use it to communicate complicated information as simply as possible to our to our customers and clients,” Warndorf explained.

They even have the capability of allowing their clients to watch a live feed of the drone video while it is in the air.

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