The pitter patter of water droplets you hear outside is not rain. It is the recent formation of ice and sleet melting away at rapid speeds. For some, this brings to light issues with a leaky roof. If you have noticed that your roof is leaking, your first priority is to figure out the underlying issue. Your next course of action is to contact a licensed roofing company for prompt and professional emergency roof repair.
Continue reading to learn some of the most common reasons why roofs leak, and what you can do to prevent roof and water damage this winter.
Roof Preventative Maintenance
In order to prevent future leaks, it is important to understand what causes them in the first place. This knowledge can help you improve your skills as a hands-on homeowner by giving you information about proper preventative maintenance. Here are some of the most common reasons why roofs start to leak:
➺ Attic Condensation – So often, a roof leak appears to be a problem with the roof, when in fact, it is a problem with the attic. Improper attic ventilation can cause excess moisture in the air from the bottom floors to buildup in the attic. This leads to an accumulation of moisture that seeps into your ceilings and walls.
➺ Ice Dams – In the winter when snow and ice are at their prime, ice dams may form on roofs. When snow melts, runs down a roof, collects at the edge, and then refreezes like that, it is called an ice dam.
➺ Clogged Gutters – When gutters are clogged, they cannot perform their primary duty of directing rainwater away from the roof. Clogged gutters lead to water accumulation underneath shingles, which causes roof leaks.
➺ Broken Shingles – Broken or cracked shingles is another common cause for roof leaks. This means it is imperative to repair broken or missing shingles right away!
➺ Cracked Chimneys – Roof leaks are commonly caused by cracked or broken chimneys. When bricks and mortar around a chimney are in poor condition, they could cause water to seep in from the outside.
➺ Insufficient Sealing at Roof Valleys – The v-shaped valley that is created when two roof slopes meet is a common place for water to pool. For this reason, proper sealing is vital to prevent water penetration. If this sealing is insufficient or wears down, a leak can occur.
➺ Cracked Flashing – Although a home’s chimney and skylights may be in good shape, the flashing around them can cause roof leaks if cracked or broken. In fact, it is one of the most common causes for leaky roofs.
➺ Defective Skylights – When skylights are not properly sealed or installed, they can lead to water penetration through the roof. Whether worn sealant, cracked glass, or improper installation, defective skylights are a vital repair to have done immediately.
➺ Fractured Vent Booting – Any sort of crack or fracture in a roof system can cause roof leaks, and vent booting is no different. Whether your roof has a gas vent or stack line, there is a boot around the base to prevent water penetration. When this fails, leaks may occur.
➺ Natural Wear and Tear – Natural wear and tear is every exteriors enemy. Overtime, roofs will incur several types of wear and tear, such as the loss of the protective granules on your shingles. This and more can lead to roof leaks.