Let us be real, nobody likes the idea of rushing for a drip bucket every time it rains. Having to stay on top of the weather forecast is not only annoying and impractical, but that drip signifies a major roofing problem- and we all know that roofing problems mean an investment in money and time.
In an attempt to save you the hassle, we have compiled a list of the most common causes of roof leakage We will tell you why they occur, what they look like and how to deal with them.
1. Cracked Flashing
Flashing consists of thin metal pieces that are attached on the roof’s joints and under the shingles in order to create a barrier that’s water resistant. This barrier can be either exposed or concealed. If it is the latter, it will have a rubberized coating overtop and if exposed, it will appear like long runs of metal sheet. If the flashing is broken, large cracks will be visible.
The reason the flashing cracks is because roofers usually use tar to seal it together, which can corrode over time. If your roof’s flashing is exposed, elements like rain and wind tend to be the major culprits of the cracks.
As for fixing, once you find the leak source, pry up the nails that were used to secure the old flashing. Remove the cracked segment and gradually put a new run of flashing, fasten it in the same pattern as the old one using appropriate nails. Finally, put a coat of roofing sealant on the nail heads.
2. Ice Dam Buildup
This is an ice ridge that occurs at the edge of the roof, preventing melting snow from draining away. The combined weight of the ice and the sitting water can damage the roof. An ice dam forms when the heat from your attic causes some of the ice to melt, regardless of the cold temperatures outdoors. The water then starts to run between the snow and the roof’s surface and turns back into ice after hitting the roof’s outer edge.
To handle an ice dam, get a roof rake and use it to remove the snow from the roof edge. You can ideally consider using an ice melt product to prevent an ice dam from forming again.
3. Broken Shingles
This is an easy one to spot. Shingles are the outer layer of your roof and so, you should be able to spot missing shingles when you see varying colored patches on the roof. Ideally, you may find the shingles littered on your yard after a storm. High winds and heavy rains are usually the cause of broken shingles which paves way for water to your home’s interior.
To fix this issue, slide pry bar underneath the row that connects the shingle that’s damaged to the one below it. Lift it up until the nail pops and then remove it by pressing down on the shingle. Remove the damaged shingle and replace it with a new one and ensure you secure it with new nails.
When you see leaves sticking out of your gutters when you look up, or don’t see water trickling out of the downspout when it’s raining, then you are dealing with clogged gutters.
Gutters are designed to help water move away from the roof and when blockage happens, they become clogged and the travel halts. As you may have guessed, the rainwater starts to pool around the area and this leads to roof leakage when left unattended.
The only way to deal with this is by getting a ladder and removing any debris and leaves on the gutter.