Roof leaks are not always easy to detect as the source may not be so apparent. Although you may see some obvious signs of leaks on the inside of your house, including discolouration, mould, mildew, and water dripping down the ceiling, it is another story to determine where these problems originate from.
Without identifying the source of the leak, there is no way that you can fix the issue properly. While roof leaks can be a nightmare for many homeowners, it does not always have to be. Here are a few easy things that you can do to locate a roof leak:
- Inspect in the Light
It goes without saying that looking for a leak at night is not such a good idea. It is always best to search for a leak on your roof during the day. Also, bring a big, bright flashlight with you to the roof so that you can see everything clearer. Make sure that you are careful while climbing up on the roof. Keep in mind that only the framing timbers are sturdy enough to bear your weight. Therefore, make sure that you don’t step on any insulation or drywall.
- Trace Backward to the Source
Follow where the water ends and work your way up to the roof. Most of the times, the leak is not directly over the area in question, but rather it has flowed down the rafters and the sheeting until there is a place where it can dribble. Search for stains or any discolourations on the wood. Once you find them, you can go ahead and trace them back to their starting point.
- Conduct a Water Test
In the case that you cannot find the source of the leak no matter how hard you look, it is recommended that you wait for everything to dry up first. When the weather has cleared up, you can ask a friend or family member to assist you with a water test. Ask them to go up on the roof with a garden hose while you are in the attic trying to find where the water gets in. Make sure that your helper is working on one area at a time instead of splashing water all over the roof. After you have found the hole, mark the area with chalk or anything that will be easy for you to spot during the actual repair time.
When You Should Call a Roofing Professional
The severity and complication of your roof issue will depend on various factors, including the roofing structure, the location of the leak, and the age of the roof. These factors will determine whether you can repair the roof by yourself or whether you need a professional to lend a hand. The following are some of the instances in which assistance from an expert is recommended:
- Your roof is steep
- Your house is over two stories high
- The roof is old and disintegrating including slipped or broken tiles
- You don’t have the right tools
- You have no knowledge of roof repairs
In sum, if you have zero experience in roofing, then it is better that you let a professional handle do the work for you.