It’s every homeowner’s nightmare. You look up at your ceiling, and you see water stains. This might mean that your roof is leaking, and that’s bad news. A leaky roof can cause a lot of damage to your home. The last thing you want to do is to ignore it. The problem won’t go away by itself, and it’s likely to become a bigger issue the longer you wait. The good news is that small leaks may not require you to get a whole new roof. You may be able to repair it or have it professionally prepared. But, the first step is to find that leak.
Finding the Leak
So how do you find the source of the leak? If you see water spots on your ceiling, that will tell you where to start. Remember, your roof is designed for rainwater to flow downwards. That means the source of your leak could be near the water spots or at some point above them.
If you have an attic, you can start there. Try to find evidence of water coming in through the roof. If you don’t have an attic, you may have to climb on the roof to inspect it. A word of caution here. Climbing onto your roof can be quite dangerous. Here are a few tips for safety:
- Do not climb onto the roof if it is raining. Pick a sunny morning!
- If possible, have someone else there to steady the ladder and help out as needed.
- Wear shoes with as much grip as possible.
- Use an extension ladder that is structurally sound and tall enough to reach the roof easily.
Once you’re on the roof, look for any obvious signs of damage. If there is visible damage, that’s most likely the source of your problem. If you don’t see anything obvious, it’s time to check out some of the most common places where leaks occur.
5 Common Locations for Roof Leaks
When it comes to roof leaks, pros know that there are some typical problem areas where you should look first. If you climb up on your roof, look for these five potential culprits right away:
- Around the chimney
Your chimney is one of the most common places to find leaks. If it’s not covered, water can enter directly into it. If the chimney or your flashing has cracks or other damage, that’s also a recipe for trouble. Give it a close look to see if you can find any signs of water damage.
- Roof valleys
The roof valleys are the low areas where two planes of the roof come together. They’re designed to funnel rainwater down to your gutters, which means a lot of water flows through them. If they are not sealed properly, or there is damage, this can create a leak with the potential to allow a lot of water into your home.
- Roof vents
Your roof vents are those pipes that are sticking up out of your roof. They should have covers on them to prevent rain from falling right in, but squirrels frequently damage those covers. Look for cracks in the vents or open spots around the area where the vent meets the roof.
- Broken shingles
If your roof is a little older or you’ve been hit by storms with strong winds or hail, you could have broken shingles. These can be hard to spot if you don’t know what you’re looking for, but examine your shingles closely to see if there are any visible signs of damage.
When to Hire a Pro
A roof leak needs to be repaired properly, or the leak will continue to exist or return after a short time. If you are not sure how to fix the leak, can’t find the leak, or you don’t feel safe getting on your roof, it’s time to call in a professional team. A professional roofer can locate and fix your leak and help you assess the damage.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact Home Pro America. We’re a highly experienced roofing and home remodeling contractor serving the Twin Cities metro area.