What Damage can a Leaking Roof Cause?
What may seem like a minor leak on the ceiling from your attic or roof, may actually be a small leak that can quickly turn into a big problem. Water damage causes rotting and makes the roof more susceptible to leaks in the future. Other signs of roof water damage include cracked shingles, granule filled gutters, amongst more. Because of this, It’s Important to know how to tell if a house has water damage from roof leaks and how to find the water damage. These tips will help you solve and prevent future roof and water damages in your home.
It’s been reported, from Water Damage Defense, that approximately 14,000 people in the US experience a water damage emergency at home or work each day, and that 98% of basements in the US will experience some form of water damage. Not only is it imperative to identify the damage, but what you can do to resolve the problem and any other potential blows to your budget.
Roof Leak Damage
A leaking roof can lead to water damage in your ceiling or attic, and lead to other issues. The first step in preventing water damage from roof leaks is knowing when your roof is leaking, and then finding the leak. How is it dripping? Is it a singular spot or along a ridge of your roof? Check for residue on any nearby materials in areas that may be difficult to see. Also, too much moisture is one of the first interior signs of roof damage. This should help you find exactly where the roof leak damage has taken place.
Causes of Roof Water Damage
Whether there’s minor or major damage, it’s important to know how to tell if your roof is leaking. There may be many causes that affect both the integrity to the exterior and interior of your home. The following lists are common causes of roof water damage:
- Cracked Flashing
- Broken Shingles
- Valleys are Sealed Improperly
- Vent Booting Cracked
- Ice Dam Buildup
- Gutters are Clogged
- Cracked Chimney
- Buckling or curling roofing shingles, or loss of granulation
- Improper installation of Skylights
- Condensation in Attic (or a musty smell is a sign of mold growth, which frequently occurs when your roof has been leaking)
- Peeling paint or rotting wood around skylights
- Water stains or mold or mildew around your chimney
How can you Tell if the Ceiling has Water Damage?
Normally, undamaged ceilings are straight and solid structures. Whenever you begin to notice any cracks (either straight or angular – such as mimicking a spider’s web) or a sagging ceiling, there may be an underlying issue with your roof. Crooked or bowing ceilings can also be a clue to potential ceiling water damage and may be in need of roof leak repair.
Once you begin to notice water falling and leaking into your home, it’s time to call a professional. There is the option to try and safely locate the damage yourself in order to clearly communicate to a specialist what you’ve been noticing in your home. Carefully read through this article before you seek any issues to know what exactly you’re looking for; the information below may help give you specifics into finding the best solutions.
How to Find a Roof Leak in the Attic
In order to detect any evidence of attic water damage, grab a flashlight and look at the underside of the roof. If you notice any dark, wet patches, or signs of mold and damaged insulation in one specific area, be sure to carefully inspect any foreign objects that may have torn or punctured the roof itself. Below are some specific examples of exterior and interior causes to roof water damage you may be experiencing:
Can you get mold from a leaky roof?
Yes. Specifically, if you happen to notice any water stains on the ceilings, there could be an issue with either a leaky pipe or leaky roof. When a leak occurs, and you happen to notice any black water leaking from the ceiling, this could be a sure sign of a leak in the ceiling coming from the roof. If there is a roof leak issue which has been ignored overtime, the water may have created an even bigger issue and could have developed mold on the ceiling from the roof leak.
For roof leak mold remediation, the best step to take, for the safety of you and your family is to contact a professional team at Jenkins Restoration who specialize in mold removal and environmental services.
Can a Leaking Roof Cause a Fire?
A leaking roof could pose a fire threat if there are shorted wires in the attic or ceiling. If you have a home with a metal roof, you should check your attic regularly for signs of water damage.
This includes checking for leaks in the roofing material itself, as well as any cracks or holes in the insulation. These problems can cause a fire hazard by allowing moisture to enter the attic space. You should turn off the electricity to the affected area.
Why Does my Roof Leak When it Rains?
Ultimately, all roofs will wear to the point where they cannot keep water out. Roof leaks during heavy rains can indicate when your shingles have served their purpose and need replacing – with time or damage causing them not hold up well any more.
Why Does my Roof Leak only When Wind Blows?
If your roof leaks when wind blows it is most likely because the water pressure is higher than the roof supports. From that, we know that your roof shingles and the roof itself have been specially designed to direct the flow of water and snow vertically.
This means shingles are designed to move water from one layer to another while keeping the inner layer dry. If rain is blowing horizontally, then rainwater can get stuck between the would be dry parts of the shingle causing them to rot and soak faster.
Roof Leak Repair & Fixing Your Water Damaged Areas
In order to fix the interior damages, there are options. One of them is to hire a roof leak repair certified professional who can inspect with expertise and operate safely.
There are also other methods available for those who prefer to do it yourself. Here are some safe and effective ways to fix a water damaged ceiling or walls.
First you must shut off the water source to your home. Then you will need to dry the affected areas – again if there’s any sight of mold, wear protective gear to prevent any respiratory issues or simply call a certified professional.
Then, you can remove the damaged areas of the interior and repair. Specifically you use a patch of drywall and sandpaper to smooth out any rough areas where the new drywall meets the original structure. Lastly, you can prime and paint the area to create a seamless finish to the area.
Is Damage from a Roof Leak Covered by Insurance?
What if you have Water Damage During Roof Replacement?
If you experience water damage during roof replacement, the first thing you should do is make sure your roofing contractor has a tarp on site. They should be prepared for the worst-case scenario of inclement weather, to cover your roof if it rains.
If it is too late and the water damage has already occurred during the roof replacement process, take pictures and document the damage. This will be important when you file an insurance claim.
Then, call your insurance company to let them know about the water damage and start the claims process.
Prevent Roof Water Damage
The best advice for preventing any possible water damage from roof leaks is to maintain the quality of your roof and the surrounding areas of your property regularly. A professional roofing contractor can inspect the roof’s integrity and fix missing shingles, warping, corrosion, or any other issue, in order to prevent roof leakage. Specific examples to prevent roof water damage include:
- Avoid limbs and debris falling on your roof by trimming your trees to a
- Clean off any twigs, leaves, etc. already on the roof
- Frequently Inspect and clean both gutters and downspouts to ensure proper drainage
- Contact a roofing contractor inspect your roof regularly
Frequently Asked Questions
How to find a roof leak?
Location is key. It’s good to have a sense of awareness of your home both inside and out. In general, knowing where your basic water source, and power / electrical source is necessary for when any issue may occur.
For leaks, you can see, or even hear evidence of water dripping and leaking in your home. Once found, examine the extent of the damage in order to narrow down any potential causes.
Can a leaking roof cause a fire?
Depending upon where exactly the leak is and where the water lands, there is a possibility of a fire starting. It’s important to know where any electrical units may be outlets, light switches, appliances, etc, as well as where and how the water is traveling.
If the water is traveling, or leaking anywhere near electrical circuits, there is a potential hazard for fire. Essentially water can reach near the circuitry and cause a spark and make the surrounding combustible materials go up in flames. Be sure and contact Jenkins Restorations if you need roof leak water damage repair.
Why does my roof only leak sometimes?
The reason your roof may only be leaking sometimes is due to the rain hitting the shingle at just the right angle. This happens because the shingle has a small hole in it. If the hole is big enough, water will go through the shingle and into the attic. If the hole is too small, the water will run down the side of the shingle and drip onto the ground.
How to find a leak in a metal roof
If you suspect that there is a leak in your metal roof, then you should first check for water damage. Next, you should look at the flashing around the perimeter of the roof. If you notice any cracks or holes in the flashing, then you should call a professional to repair the problem.
Can condensation cause roof leaks?
Yes, condensation can cause roof leaks. Condensation occurs when water vapor in the air cools down below the dew point temperature. The result is that liquid water forms on the surface of the roof. This causes the roof to leak.
Can a leaky roof cause electrical problems?
Yes, a leaking roof can cause electrical problems. If the leak is near the electrical wiring, water could slip through and damage your electrical system and junction boxes.
Can a leaking roof collapse?
Yes, a leaking roof can collapse. However, it depends on how much weight the roof has to bear. A leak indicates pooling water between your ceiling and roof. The more pooling means the heavier the weight and stress on your beams, drywall, and insulation, which could lead to a roof collapse.