As a homeowner, there are lots of maintenance tasks to take care of regularly. Some are more important than others. From house painting to winter-proofing your pipes, there is never a shortage of chores. Let’s consider a roof leak. Although it’s tempting to ignore it for a while, it’s actually one of the most important things to fix right away. Read on to discover some of the causes of a leaky roof and the consequences if ignored.
What Can Happen If You Don’t Fix a Leaky Roof?
One of the first things homeowners notice when they have a leaky roof is a water spot on their ceiling. But the water can go to other places too – like the attic floor, into walls, and onto the framing. Water in your attic can cause substantial damage to your insulation, which requires replacement. And, when water seeps and leaks onto wood, it can result in dry rot and mold. Speaking of mold, nobody wants it in their home because of the significant health problems it can cause.
Other unexpected issues from a leak in your roof are electrical damage and the potential for a fire. Everybody knows that water and electricity is a bad combination. Water coming in contact with wiring can produce a short and cause a fire. If you see water coming in near open wiring, shut off your power and call an electrician and AmeriPro Roofing. Besides a risk of fire, water coming into your home can wreak havoc on drywall, flooring, and household belongings. And if you’re away from home for an extended period of time, the amount of damage could be catastrophic. As you can see, ignoring a leak in your roof (no matter how small) isn’t smart. Let’s move on to how you can prevent these problems from occurring.
How To Fix A Leaking Roof
Most of the time, a roof leak makes itself known by drips or ugly ceiling stains. Using this spot as a starting point, access your attic and head to the approximate location where you saw the drip or stain.
Step 1: Access the attic.
While in the attic, you might see tell-tale signs of water leaks –such as water stains, mold, or mildew. Trace the signs of the water leak up the roof and rafters to the entry point. This may be harder than it sounds because the visible signs of a leak may be several feet away from the source of the leak.
If the source of the leak isn’t apparent, you may need to attach your garden hose and grab a buddy who isn’t afraid of heights.
Step 2: Use a hose to mimic heavy rains.
With one person in the attic, have another person bring a hose onto the roof of the house. Carefully begin spraying water just above where the leak is visible inside the house.
If water droplets fail to appear inside the attic, the person on the roof will need to move to the right and the left side to see if the location of the leak can be uncovered. Eventually, you’ll hopefully find the vicinity of the leak. When this happens, you need to notify the person on the roof to mark the location.
This process won’t be fast. In fact, the person with the hose needs to move slowly and methodically. It may take over an hour to find.
Step 3: Look for roof leaks in common places.
Cracked Roof Vents
The small pipes that protrude from your roof may be the source of your leak. Roof vents have flashing around them and a rubber boot that helps seal the top of the vent. Over time, either the flashing or boot may become damaged or cracked, resulting in a leak.
Another culprit to consider when trying to find a leak is the area around the chimney. Cracks in the chimney crown and worn flashing are often the causes of leaks around chimneys.
A roof valley is an area where two planes of a roof come together. A roof valley must be adequately sealed, or a leak may occur.
How Routine Roof Inspections Can Prevent Leaks
Having your roof checked by a professional on an annual basis can catch any small leaks and issues before they become a big problem or even a flood! Consider a roof inspection similar to your yearly medical or dental check-up. A professional roofer, just like a trusted doctor can see issues that you might not know are there.
- Shingle damage or missing shingles
- Granule loss on shingles
- Caulking problems that can let water in
- Flashing that’s deteriorated or missing
- Pipes without rubber boots or rotted boots
- Sagging areas or wood rot
- Missing or damaged chimney caps
- Damaged or unsecured gutters
- Fascia board damage or dry rot
As a homeowner, you can always keep an eye on the above items yourself, but many of our customers would rather not climb tall ladders and walk on slippery roofs. That’s where having a professional do the job comes in.
Prevent Roof Leaking With Storm Prep
Whether you’re in an area of the country with heavy rain, snow, or winds, there’s nothing better than being prepared and avoiding a leaky roof repair. As you’re getting ready for inclement weather, it’s smart to have