If you live in an area prone to frequent rainy weather conditions, it’s especially important to be aware of what would cause your roof to leak. Neglecting a roof leak is about more than replacing a few missing shingles. It can lead to decay, mold, rot, structural damage and even property loss.
Some causes of roof leaks to watch for include:
Flashing is a thin piece of metal that’s installed under your roof’s shingles and under the roof joints to create a water-resistant barrier. It’s a piece of metal required at any roof and wall intersections to prevent water intrusion. Exposed flashing simply looks like a long piece of sheet metal but concealed flashing will have a rubber-like coating on top.
This is one of the easiest causes to spot. You can generally identify any missing shingles rather quickly by searching for any mismatched patches on your roof. Although you want to include this in your biannual roof check, it’s also something you want to make a habit of checking after heavy winds or storms.
A dead valley is when two of the roof’s slopes come together but don’t contribute to facilitating directional flow off the roof. In other words, a dead valley will collect water runoff and debris, which can cause costly problems if neglected. If you have a roof with a dead valley, it will be one of two types. The first is when the valley ends at a flat wall corner, and the second is when two or more slopes run into another.Either way, the shingle material used in the dead valley is never enough to prevent water intrusion sufficiently. If you have a dead valley that ends at a flat wall corner, you can install a soldered metal pan that’s custom fit to seal the area perfectly.
Like shingles and flashing, your home’s chimney is exposed to harsh weather conditions. Clear signs that your chimney needs repair are if you see any wear and tear along the mortared sections around your chimney or along the mud cap.
Like broken or missing shingles, cracked skylight seals are easy to identify. If you start noticing wet spots around your skylights or need to place drip buckets, then you have skylight seals that were either improperly installed, worn out or cracked. Fortunately, a leaking skylight is easily repaired with reflashing or resealing using a layer of silicone.
There are two quick ways to tell if your gutters are clogged. The first is if you see leaves and other debris sticking out when you look up, and the second is the lack of water coming out of the downspout during a rainstorm. When your gutters get clogged, they can’t help direct water away from your room and foundation. In fact, when they’re clogged, the excess rainwater will overflow, seep into any nearby cracks or trickle down your wall and into your home’s foundation.
Most often when you have a leaking roof, the evidence is hidden. You’ll usually see clear signs of water, especially in the walls or carpet or water stains on the ceilings or water spots along the roof of exterior walls.
If you notice any water intrusions, it’s essential to fix a leaky roof immediately. If neglected, it can lead to:
Any amount of moisture and water that enters your home through a roof leak can lead to stained walls and damaged ceilings. The excess moisture will create a chemical discoloration and ultimately stain it and require replacing. Roof leaks can also cause ceiling tiles to break apart, become stained or even promote the growth of mildew or mold.
That said, mold and mildew growth can present serious health issues — especially for those with respiratory diseases or allergies. The spores from mold growing can spread to your HVAC system, carpets, furniture and even into your clothes.
Another consequence of neglected roof leaks is structural damage to your home. The most obvious is damage to your frames, exterior trims, ceiling joists and rafters.
If you have an unattended roof leak, expensive repairs are inevitable. That’s because neglected leaks can make wood spongy and cause a majority of it to deteriorate.
In some cases, that means the structure of your entire home has been compromised and that the ceiling may fall away at any time. In other words, a long-standing roof leak can lead to property loss.
Although your roof may be at the bottom of your list of home maintenance properties, as you can see, it’s a portion of your home care plan that requires a more proactive role in preventing costly damages.
If you notice any signs of a water intrusion, it’s imperative that you get a roof leak repair service as soon as possible. In many cases, noticeable signs of a roof leak mean it’s too late and already an emergency.
If you notice signs of water intrusion or require a rapid roof leak repair in the Portland area, contact your roof specialists at Roof Life of Oregon today.
A healthy and properly functioning roof, free of moss and debris is also appealing and a source of homeowner pride.
Get a free quote for an inspection today.