What I'm Seeing Now


Roof Truss Cables Must Be Removed

Roof truss cables must be removed.

Some builders remove them and some don't.

But leaving roof truss cables exposed just provides another unwanted penetration through the roof, with shingles that are never going to glue down flat. 

Shingles that are not flat are wind vulnerable. 

And leak vulnerable.

Any roof can leak at any time depending on the force and direction of rain.  Winds can blow hard, and the rain will go where it is blown.

If there is a penetration through any roof with points of vulnerability - be it a skylight, plumbing penetration tube, ridge vent, or even loose shingles - there is the potential for leaking, and damage.

This roof had two cables like the one in the photo.  This is a new construction and these cables were seen during a pre-drywall inspection.  The supervisor said that cables left in this way "have always been fine."

When viewing the long run the word "fine" simply cannot be used.  The word "always" should likely not be used in any roof context!

My recommendation:  a pre-drywall inspection can reveal things that appear innocent but in reality are not.  And buyers seeing this sort of thing, and hearing from the trusted supervisor that it would be "fine," simply move on.  It was much easier to remove this cable prior to shingles, but now is the time to do it anyway. 



Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560


Comment balloon 8 commentsJay Markanich • May 23 2017 10:15AM


This is beyond any comprehension. And the supervisor endorsed the practice? He ought to be looking for a new job!

Posted by Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI, Presence, Persistence & Perseverance (HomeSmart Realty West & Lend Smart Mortgage, Llc.) over 3 years ago

Good morning Jay. In my experience the pre-drywall inspection of new construction can cure many ills that are certain to be problems down the road if not corrected! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) over 3 years ago

I can imagine why someone would want to do that.  The photo example looks like it is begging for a problem.

Posted by Myrl Jeffcoat, Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent (GreatWest Realty) over 3 years ago

I have never seen that... why would they leave them?

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) over 3 years ago

Jay, Can't say I've ever seen that, but strange that the builder would think it okay to leave there.  Baffled at why the roofer wouldn't have balked from the get go.

Posted by Liz and Bill Spear, RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton) (RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 www.LizTour.com) over 3 years ago

S&N - it's one of those things that I wonder about every time I see!  It simply doesn't make sense.  That one looks like it stretches from the ridge vent downward, and why the roofer didn't stick it back in baffles me.

Wayne - it is indeed that.  Some of the stuff I come up with is incredible, and odd, and some of it happens all the time, like the shower pans and bath tubs that are "attached" to the studs with drywall nails.  Unbelievable.

I can hear it too, Myrl.  And it's saying, "Please!"

Because it's less work, Fred.  And the roofer says it isn't his job.  Who cares what we leave the for homeowner.  And during inspections buyers see that and think it's okay!

Bliz - I may have answered that one to Fred, but this all boils down to one word - which is my beef with modern construction - it boils down to a lack of PROFESSIONALISM.


Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

Having my roof replaced in 2 weeks.  Any suggestion on what to watch for during the install?

Posted by Stephen Weakley (Nationwide Mortgage Services) over 3 years ago

Stephen - thick tar paper, nails driven straight, not at an angle (and not staples), ice shield where required, drip edging, kick-out flashing as needed, integrated ridge vents (a combo of venting and shingles), and good materials.  You want copper-flaked shingles, not zinc or magnesium.  The so-called architectural "lifetime" shingles are the way to go.

My roof was shredded by a tornado 6 weeks ago, and it will be replaced soon too.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 3 years ago

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