6 Common Roof Leaks
When it comes to roof leaks, even the smallest of consistent drips can cause major water damage. This makes stopping any of these potential leaks of paramount importance. But in order to stop these leaks, you need to know where to look and what to look for. Here are the six most common spots where you may find leaks in your home.
Around the Chimney
While it may seem like your roof and chimney are one single entity, they’re actually not. They are connected using strips of flashing which covers the large gaps between the roof and chimney. This flashing often is a primary source of leaks in the home. Over time, this flashing might pull away from the brick or rust. It’s generally easy to spot this when it happens so if you have a leak and the flashing is pulled away from the brick, you’ll know where the leak is originating.
The shingles on your roof serve many functions for your home. One way they protect your home is by ensuring the heat or cold doesn’t get into your home. Another way it protects your roof is by keeping water out which helps you avoid potentially dangerous water damage. However, as much as these shingles protect you, they can be damaged by old age or a big storm. If the shingles are damaged or missing, water may be able to seep into the underlayment and sheathing which can then cause leaks inside the home. To make sure you’re not in danger of these leaks and subsequent water damage, look for the signs of damaged shingles which include lost granules, curling or buckling shingles, or obvious missing spots.
The gutters that stretch around your roof likely collect leaves, pine needles, and other debris as it falls from overhanging trees. This debris can clog or damage the gutters causing water to collect when it rains. The standing water can then back up in the gutters and cause leaks to occur. People failing to clean their gutters is one of the most common causes of water leaks. But there are other potential dangers. The water can freeze and that has the potential to cause many other problems. Even if you don’t expect that there are leaks, you should clean out your gutters regularly to ensure they don’t clog or become damaged.
Unless you have a flat roof, there will probably be spots on your roof where two different planes will intersect. The line where these planes meet is commonly referred to as a valley. These valleys may be covered with flashing, rolled roofing, or some other material depending on where you live. These valleys can be potential dangers because water tends to collect in these low areas and any potential problems with its covering can allow water to seep into the house causing significant water damage.
Ice dams are potential problems in cold climates in which snow that accumulates on a sloping roof melts and flows down the roof underneath the blanket of snow that insulates the roof. This causes a dam of ice to build up on the edge of the roof and catch melted snow rather than allowing it to run off as it should. This backup of water has the potential to cause major leaks in your roof and cause significant water damage in your home.
Any objects that extend above the roof such as vents, pipes, or other penetrations have the potential to cause leaks in the roof. Most of these objects will have flashing around them to connect them to the roof so it’s important to check the flashing to ensure that there’s no rust or loose spots on or around it. As flashing is a primary source of leaks in homes, this has the potential to cause serious water damage to your home.
Leaks, even minuscule ones, have the ability to cause major water damage to your home. Most of these leaks originate from the roof and allows water to drip down into the attic or walls which can be difficult to see until it’s too late. That’s why it’s important for homeowners to be vigilant of any potential problems. If you suffer water damage in your home, call on the professionals at SERVPRO to remediate the problem.