Why It’s Important to Repair that Roof  Leak

A residential roof installed by Smith & Ramirez Roofing

In 2020, the average home insurance claim for water damage in the United States topped $10,000. The same property management research found that some 14,000 people nationally face a water damage emergency daily. 

Since 2005, the number of $500,000 water damage claims has doubled. 

This information may sound familiar to residents of El Paso. Many people here recently required emergency roof leak repair after monsoon-like conditions struck. Unfortunately, the water damage was compounded by the triple-digit temperatures.

A roof that won’t stay watertight isn’t just a danger to discolor your ceiling but can lead to structural damage and pose a health hazard. 

High heat will send mold and mildew raging through a wet home like wildfire. 

In many cases, homeowners are not prepared to fix a roof leak because they don’t have the know-how or they can’t fit it into their budget.

In the following article, we’ll discuss the importance of keeping your roof in tip-top shape and roof leak repair. 

What Causes a Roof to Leak?

The three biggest causes of leaky roofs are the materials of your roof failing, high winds or storm-related damage, and poor installation. 

There are many materials to roof your home: asphalt, ceramic tile, metal, slate, and even blacktop. 

However, all these materials have a certain lifespan. They range from 15 to 18 years with low-cost asphalt shingles to more than 150 years with high-end slate products. 

Another issue that will cause a roof to leak is taking a beating from the elements. All the above roofing products have different wind ratings. That means that you’ll find that many people choose metal tile in Florida over asphalt shingles because of the constant exposure to hurricane winds.

In the Southwest, many people choose ceramic tile due to its longevity and ability to deflect high temperatures. However, people don’t typically choose ceramics in the Northeast because ceramics can crack when exposed to ice and snow.  

Another great solution is GAF roofing systems that guarantee water stoppage from the shingle to the vapor lock. 

Of course, damage to your roof is almost guaranteed if trees or other debris strike it in heavy storms. 

Poor Installation a Real Problem

Unfortunately, one of the most common causes of a leak is the substandard shingle or roof flashing installation.

However, you can take some basic steps to ensure that you are hiring a qualified and professional roof installer. The first is checking to make sure they are insured and bonded. This means that they can guarantee against any shoddy labor. 

Also, check to see how the roofer has been in business. Roofing is a tough business, and those companies with a track record of customer satisfaction tend to stay in business. 

Check the company’s online reviews and ask for references. This will give you the opinion of the company from a home or business owner like yourself. More importantly, if a company can’t provide a satisfied customer to refer them, that could be a tell-tale sign of shoddy quality work.

Common Issues

Many people discover they have a roof leak in two ways. First, they see discoloration or spotting on their ceilings, or they start to notice the smell of funk that comes with mold or mildew. 

If this is the case, head to the attic and locate the source of the leak. If you are “lucky,” you’ll see puddling from the breach. In many cases, this happens where the roofing meets the flashing or has significantly degraded or damaged the roofing material. 

Start clearing as many of your possessions away from the leak as you can. Make sure to clean it if it’s been exposed to water to stem the damage. If you can halt the leak from spreading by placing a bucket or other container, do so. 

If you can not determine the source of the leak from below the roof or can’t access the roof leak, you may have to cut into the discolored ceiling. 

This sounds like a big deal, but cutting may be the best way to determine the leak in many cases. Also, it’s tough to paint over discolored sheetrock, so you will likely need to replace the damaged area of the ceiling anyway. Otherwise, you’ll need to live with dingy brown spots of a water-damaged ceiling. 

Mold and Mildew

If you start to smell the funk of mold or mildew, you need to call in the experts immediately. In most cases, mold and mildew are a stinky dirty mess but rarely harmful to people.

However, sometimes a type of mold dubbed black mold sets in, and this problem can pose a health risk to people, especially if someone in your home has a compromised immune system or a respiratory problem.

Sadly, it’s challenging to solve extensive mold issues with a DIY approach. In many cases, if not done properly, you’ll end up spreading the harmful spores deeper into your dwelling. 

If you have a problem with mold, one tip for dealing with the dank smell is to place bowls of white vinegar and water near the affected area. The solution will absorb the smell and provide temporary relief. 

Uncommon Issues

One of the most significant consequences of a leaky roof is structural damage. For example, if your joists and framing get saturated with water, they can expand, soften, and bow. 

This timber weakening will cause your house to lose some of your home’s weight-bearing integrity. In addition, the water and pressure could also impact the house’s foundation. This may lead to cracking or another structural shifting. 

Any problem like this will cost you much more than a few hundred in flashing, shingles, and paint. 

Roof Leak Repair Experts

The best thing a home or business owner can do when they need a roof leak repair is to call the professionals for an inspection and an estimate as soon as possible.

This way, you can get the problem solved before it leads to bigger expenses and more headaches. Also, you might find a roofing solution that will set you up for the rest of your time in your home. 

Are you ready to tackle your leaky roof? Contact us today to get started.

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