What to Do When the Roof is Leaking?

Roof leaks have a bothersome way of showing up at the worst possible times. You may have exhausted your annual home maintenance and repair budget already, or maybe you’ve recently paid for a major car repair. Unfortunately, however, roof leaks are issues that cannot be left unchecked. Damp, damaged building materials often create the perfect breeding grounds for a variety of pests. Untended leaks can also lead to serious issues with mildew and mold, discolored ceilings and siding, and countless other problems. Even minor roof leaks can be progressive, ongoing problems that constantly diminish the value of your home investment. 

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One of the most common ways to discover a roof leak is to notice pooling water on the countertops or floor. If a roof leak develops just above a common area, you may even have cold drops of water hit you directly on your shoulders or head. Keep in mind, however, that leaks don’t always form in the most noticeable spaces. Moreover, they won’t always result in visible pools of water. Thus, you might have a roof leak if:

  • The ceiling has a brown patch or other forms of discoloration
  • The paint on your ceiling or wall is blistering or bulging
  • There are water spots at the exterior of the home just beneath the roofline
  • One or more of your home’s exterior walls has become mossy or moldy
  • You’re consistently finding shingle granules in your gutters or at the base of your downspouts
  • You’ve got one or more missing shingles

If you know that your roof is nearing the end of its lifespan and that you’re due for a roof replacement, be extra vigilant in checking the building exterior for signs of existing leaks, and in checking the ceilings throughout your home for discoloration. Remember, the discoloration can affect ceilings in high-traffic, frequently used areas, and in spaces that are hidden away such as closets and pantries.

Take Immediate Steps to Minimize Property Damage

If you’ve got water coming from your ceiling, the first thing you want to do is contain the leak. Place a trash can, bucket, or another suitable container underneath the drip. You can also place a board inside of this container at a slant so that the water runs down its surface rather than hitting the collected water and splashing back out. This will prevent further damages to the flooring and the surrounding baseboards and drywall. If the ceiling is discolored or if the paint is bulging, take steps to vent the leak. You can do this by using a screwdriver to puncture the affected area right at its center. When it comes to preventing property damage, this might seem counterproductive, but it will alleviate building pressure on the ceiling. When too much water and pressure accumulate, there is always the risk of having a large section of the ceiling burst or collapse.

Once you’ve addressed the problem in the interior of your home, you can take steps to prevent further damages to the building exterior by tarping the suspected area of the leak. This is only something that you should try to do on your own if:

  • You’re fairly certain about the point of the leak’s origination
  • You can access the affected area easily and safely
  • You have the proper equipment and materials for tarping a roof leak

Roofers provide tarping services during the rainy season to minimize property damages until the necessary repairs can be performed. When you have your roof tarped professionally, you can make sure the correct area has been addressed. More importantly, you won’t run the risk of falling off your ladder or your roof, or of causing additional roof damages. Keep in mind that when roof damages are already severe, mounting the roof can be especially dangerous.

Take pictures of the affected area both inside and outside of the home. If this is a covered repair, you may need to share these images with your insurance company. Roof repairs for an obvious roof leak should be scheduled right away. If you have a leaky roof and want to have it inspected, tarped, and fixed, we’re here to help. Get in touch with us today by calling 913-850-6556.