Signs Your Roof Has a Leak

Signs Your Roof Has a Leak

A leaking roof, whether it’s a residential home or commercial building, has the potential to become an expensive problem. From unsightly water stains to mold development that can pose health issues, roof leaks should never go ignored. To help minimize damage and even save a bit money, check out some of the different signs that your roof has a leak.

Water Damage in Attic

Check your attic for signs of water damage to help determine if roof leaks are present. A leaking roof allows in moisture and that moisture often leads to mold. It takes only 24 to 48 hours after water damage for mold to begin to develop. Mold can grow on plywood, drywall, insulation, and other attic surfaces. Mold spores travel through the home via ductwork and can be dangerous to anyone living in the home. Mold exposure often causes allergy symptoms like eye and nose irritations, but it also can seriously impact the health of anyone living with asthma or other respiratory conditions.

Water Stains on Exterior Wall(s)

If any of a building’s exterior walls have water stains, especially ones that appear worse after a rainstorm, it’s likely there is a roof leak. Water stains along the exterior wall(s) often mean that the roof’s flashing is missing, damaged, or even simply loose. Flashing is typically found in valleys, around any dormer windows or skylights, and around the chimney. It’s used over joints on the roof to help keep water from coming into the home.

Water Stains on Ceiling

Sometimes a roof leak is difficult to spot because the water doesn’t flow down the exterior wall. With some leaks, the water moves across the roof and under the shingles. This type of leak finds its way into the attic affecting the insulation and other materials before it then develops into an ugly water stain on the ceiling. Not all ceiling water stains are from roof leaks, though. The cause could be a leaking window, condensation from pipes, or a plumbing issue. To determine if it’s a roof leak, confer with a roofing specialist.

Missing, Cracked, or Cupped Shingles

Any time a roof has missing or cracked shingles it’s at a higher risk for leaks and costly water damage. Shingles are an important defense against the elements that have the power to invade the home and cause serious issues. Cupped shingles are when the shingle’s corners turn upward or they have a wave-like appearance. Shingle cupping often happens when an attic may not be properly vented. The roof can heat up if the attic gets too hot, which in turn turns up the heat on the underside of your shingles. Oftentimes, rain blows up and under cupped shingles causing leaks. Additionally, if you plan on selling your home, things like missing or damaged shingles can really slow down your sale, as buyers and their inspectors are quick to point out any issues with the roof before committing to a sale.

Granules in Gutters

When shingles crack or begin to deteriorate, usually from age, granules of material break off and often sluice down into the gutters. If you find granules in your gutters, it’s probably a sign of shingle deterioration, which means portions of the roof are exposed to water and other elements. This exposure increases the risk for roof leaks and water damage.

Routinely walking around the exterior of your home or commercial building to do a visual check of the areas that can be seen without ladder assistance can make a difference. You may be able to spot missing or broken shingles as well as flashing issues. Recognizing the signs of a roof leak early can help correct issues before serious and costly damage develops. If you have any suspicions that your roof’s integrity has been compromised, contact us as soon as possible to minimize any potential damage to your home.

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