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watkinsway's podcast

Jan 31, 2022

If you see water stains on your ceiling or water dripping from above during a rainstorm, it’s natural to assume that the leak is coming from your roof. After all, your roof is constantly exposed to the elements and is susceptible to everything from heavy rains to strong winds. But leaks don't always come from your roof — in fact, a lot of times they can come from just about anywhere else.


To save yourself some time and money, make sure the leak is coming from your roof before calling a professional. A water stain on the ceiling or dripping water during a rainstorm doesn't necessarily mean the source is above your head.


Leaks Can Come from Places Other Than Your Roof


When you find a leak in your home, the source of the water is not always obvious. Sometimes the water is coming from your roof, and sometimes it's coming from somewhere else.


How can you tell? Here's how to figure out where that drippy ceiling is leaking from:


Check Your Attic

The first place to look for a ceiling leak is in your attic if you have one. Once you're in the attic, take a flashlight and look for any signs of water damage.  Look for dark spots or lines, or even puddles of water, which would indicate that there was a recent leak. If you don't see anything there, check the rafters and floor of your attic for any signs of discoloration. That's usually a good indication that something has been dripping onto those areas repeatedly.


Look for Holes in Roofs


The most common cause of a roof leak is a hole in the roof. This can be caused by damage to the shingles, when they're blown off or damaged by hail, or from old age, when they start to crack and crumble. A hole can also occur because of rust or corrosion on metal flashing around chimneys, skylights or vents. After many years of weathering, cracks can develop in both types of material.


Any holes in the roof should be patched as soon as possible to prevent further damage and expensive repairs down the road.


Check for Plumbing Leaks


Your plumbing system is responsible for carrying water throughout your home, so it makes sense that leaking pipes would cause water damage. If you have a bathroom above where you see signs of a water leak or drip, it could be a plumbing leak instead of a roofing issue. Toilets, bathtubs, and sinks can crack and leak over time and sealants around pipe joints could be deteriorating, allowing water to escape. If this happens in upper-level bathrooms, then you may notice water dripping down onto your ceiling below. When you suspect this type of leak, it is best to call in a professional plumber to take care of the problem.


Look at Your Gutters

Another common source of leaks is blocked gutters. If your gutters are full of leaves, twigs and other debris, this can cause water to build up and overflow, which may ultimately result in a leaky roof. In addition to clogged gutters, you should also check for missing gutter pieces or gaps between joints as this may allow water to seep through and cause leaks.


Inspect Your HVAC System for Condensation

One of the most common sources of leaks in homes with HVAC systems is condensation on the ductwork. When you turn on the heating or cooling system and cold air passes over warm surfaces, condensation can form and, eventually, cause water damage to the surrounding areas. If you’re noticing water damage around your ductwork, contact a professional contractor for help. They can use spray foam insulation to seal up leaks and prevent future damage.


How to Tell for Sure if Your Roof Is Leaking


If you're still unable to locate the source of your leak after inspecting these areas, call Watkins Construction to inspect your roof and determine what’s necessary to fix the problem.


Regardless of where the leaks come from, it’s important that you do something about it right away to avoid further damage to your home. So, if you notice a problem, make sure to call our team right away. We’ll help you locate the source of the problem and provide an effective solution that will prevent the leaks from continuing. We can help you with all your home repair needs, including repairs for leaks in your roof, foundation, or plumbing system.

Watkins Roof Repair