10 Most Common Causes of a Roof Leak

You can blame the rain all you like, but roof leaks happen because of your roof.

Sure, nobody wants to run out into the bathroom to grab a bucket for the rain. But let’s face it, the rain is inevitable. So what you should really focus on are roof maintenance and proper installations.

That’s what actually does the damage.

So instead of swearing at the rain, here are a few things you should actually be blaming instead.

1. Improper Installation of Your Skylight

If you find yourself placing buckets under your skylight every time it rains, you’ll probably guess the problem. Sometimes there could be a leak if the skylight has not been sealed properly on its sides. However, there could also be a leak if there is a crack in the skylight itself.

If for example, a coconut falls directly on to it, or you have animals running on your roof, you may face a problem like this.

2. A Missing Shingle

The outer layer of your roof is made up of shingles. So if you spot any missing pieces on the exterior of your roof, you’ll know exactly what’s up and what to expect. These are likely to go missing especially after a big rainstorm or gale.

If you’re lucky you may be able to find them around your yard.

3. Clogged Gutters

Your gutters are meant to be outlets for the rain to fall out of. If these get clocked with twigs, leaves or other variants of nature’s paraphernalia, there could be a clogging preventing the proper flow of water.

If there’s no room for the water to go there’ll be a mini flood on your roof. The water will find its way into any tiny cracks or holes and make its way directly into your home.

So as important as roof maintenance is, make sure you’re taking care of the gutters as well. Regular cleanings, brushings, and upkeep will ensure a smooth drainage system for your home.

4. A Break in the Sealing

When two planes of your roof meet, they are sealed to form a sloping valley. Sometimes these seals are prone to cracks, chips or breaks. As the water runs down your roof they pass through these valleys and drip down through the cracks into your home.

If you want a permanent fix, here’s a great option for Roofing in South Jordan, UT.

5. Condensation in Your Attic

Your attic accumulates a lot of moisture which then causes the growth of mold, mildew and sometimes even moss. Unlike the rest of your home, it is a space with little or no climate control.

The growth of mold, especially black mold can cause tons of damage to the structure and give way to rainwater and other leaks. A trip up to your attic will help you figure out if this is a problem in your home or not. If it smells too musty or feels damp, you should definitely get an inspection done.

6. A Broken Roof Vent

A roof vent is a passage through which your house eliminates excessive amounts of moisture. Sometimes these vents or the flashing around them cracks to create enough space for water to seep through.

7. A Break in Your Chimney

Your chimney needs maintenance. Improper maintenance leads to breaks in the sealing, weak joints, loose shingles and cracks in the flashing around it. Roof cement issues around your chimneys and walls are even more susceptible to overtime damage.

8. Cracked Flashing

Flashing are those sheets of metals that are placed beneath the shingles of your roof. These are responsible for creating a barrier against water. When these slip out of place or develop cracks or breaks it can cause your roof to leak.

9. A Chipped or Aged Roof

How old is your roof? ‘Cause it wasn’t meant to serve you forever. If you consistently notice missing shingles, cracks in the flashing, chips on the surface and other issues, it might just be time to get a roof replacement.

In fact, the older your roof is the more likely it is to have almost every one of these problems on the list.

10. An Ice Dam on Your Roof

An ice dam is a long ridge of ice that sometimes forms at the edge of your roof. The weighs down fragile parts of your roof and can cause damage to its surface. This is more common in places prone to snowstorms and colder climates.

An ice damn could also prevent leaves, twigs and other things from sliding off your roof, which would cause even more damage.

How Can You Fix a Roof Leak?

Once you’ve tracked down the problem, you can either try to do it yourself or get someone who specializes in roof repairs to do it for you. The latter might be a better option because inexperience on the roof might cause even more damage to the surface.

This is an especially good option if you’re having trouble sourcing the problem in the first place. However, the first step is inspecting the place where you have a roof leak, and then checking that portion of the roof or attic to see what the problem could be.

Do remember that prevention is much better than cure. So, make sure you conduct regular roof inspections and properly maintain all of its nooks and crannies.

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