Locate Roof Leaks Locate Roof Leaks

A leaky roof is one of the most common challenges faced by homeowners. When the roof leaks, a variety of problems can follow, from infestations of mold and mildew to damaged foundations. It is important, therefore, for homeowners to know how to find and repair those inevitable drips and leaks.

When you do see a roof leak, it is important not to panic, and to realize the roof leaks can be repaired, often with low expenses and minimal time commitment. The first step is to identify the source of the leak. There are a number of very common places for roofs to leak, including:

  • Fields of shingles
  • Valleys or low spots in the roof
  • Skylights
  • Chimneys
  • Plumbing vent flashings
  • Wall step flashings
  • Furnace or B-vent flashings
  • Ice dams
  • Missing shingles

The first sign of a roof leak is often the presence of wet ceiling tiles. In this case the source of the leak can often be found by tracing the leak backwards to its source on the roof, keeping in mind that the source of the leak may be some distance away from where it is dripping into the home.

After the leak has been located, the first step is to remove any perishable materials from under the leak. It may be necessary to relocate electronic equipment, such as TVs and computers, and to move furniture and other materials.

If the leak is running along the wall, it may be necessary to remove the top tiling in order to get to the source of the leak. Even so, some leaks may originate further up on the roof, making the source somewhat difficult to find.

If the source of the leak turns out to be as simple as a missing block of shingles due to a recent windstorm, the solution may be as simple as replacing those missing shingles. If the cause is more complex, it may be necessary to consult a roofing professional to check the roof. This will help to ensure that no more damage takes place, and it is important to act quickly when it comes to a leaking roof.

Even when leaks are not occurring, have the roof inspected from time to time to prevent leaks and damage from occurring. It is a good idea to have the roof inspected after a heavy rain or heavy snow, and after serious weather phenomena such as hail storms or hurricanes. Something as simple as a clogged gutter or downspout can cause the roof to spring a leak as well, so be sure to clean out those gutters and downspouts on a regular basis in order to keep the roof looking like new.

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