The hardest part of repairing a roof leak is finding the leak. It’s easy to tell if you have one. You’ll see wet spots running down walls and on ceilings.
It’s important to repair leaks as soon as you see these warning signs. The longer water is allowed to linger, the worse the damage will be. Light water damage can quickly turn into multiple different types of home damage. Water can cause mold growth, which will force you to have it remediated. It can also rot boards in the ceiling or walls, causing structural damage. A leak can leave parts of your ceiling or walls visibly damaged.
There are lots of things that can cause roof leaks.
- Ice dams can lift shingles, giving water a place to get in
- Strong winds can damage or lift shingles
- Construction on your roof can crack shingles or leave gaps between protrusions
- Unsealed valleys
- Clogged gutters
Where should you start looking for a roof leak?
There are going to be at least 2 spots to every roof leak. The spot where it looks like the leak is coming from, and the spot it’s actually coming from. The water from the leak will likely slide down your ceiling away from the point of the leak, causing the illusion of a leak where the damage is. A good place to begin looking is the area surrounding the visible damage, but don’t limit yourself to looking strictly above the damage.
If it isn’t obvious where the leak is coming from, you can look for these signs:
Gaps in shingles:
Gaps in shingles allow water to sneak in
Cracks in roof protrusions:
Places where the structure penetrates the roof are the most common places for roof leaks. These can include chimneys, vents, or dormers.
During construction, nails can sometimes miss the framing of the house. These nails gather moisture and it can drip into the ceiling, causing small water spots.
When is it too late to find a roof leak?
Mold can begin forming within the first 48 hours of a leak, so catching it and stopping it as early as possible is crucial to maintaining your home. Don’t let a roof leak fester or it will cause mold, rot, and structural damage.