Because often the actual spot where the roof leaks is not always exactly where the water stains appear on your ceiling, finding a roof leak can be difficult. At one point, water can enter the roof and run down to another before it begins to soak into the ceiling. Official roof damage (shingles are missing or destroyed, stains on ceilings or walls) is sometimes easy to spot, but by then you likely already have some significant water damage. Before the leaks emerge, your best bet is to find the roof damage.
Identifying Roof Damage
A visual inspection of your roof can help you spot missing and damaged shingles (damaged shingles may be curled, cracked, or torn). If this type of damage is found (i.e. it covers less than 30% of the entire roof), the issue could be solved by roofing repairs. More extensive damage could require replacement of the roof. Also bear in mind that not only the roof itself can be damaged, but also the ventilation pipes, roof flashing, gutters and fencing. Also be sure to check them for damage. If you suspect the damage to your roof, here is a clear list of what you need to look for:
- Composition shingles: Curling, granulation loss, shingles broken, damaged or missing
- Wood shingles/shakes: Molding and decay, cracking and curling
- Flat roof: Visible gaps, holes or drops, numerous blisters and/or wrinkles (also test patched areas inside the attic)
- Flashing: Tears, penetration of the wall.
- Roofing cement:Excess cement, crumbling
- Soffits and fascia: Decay, stains
- Soffit and ridge vents: Clogged or damaged vents, flashing and shingles around them curling or missing
- Gutters:Decay or rust, leaky seams filled with debris, loosely attached to the structure, bent or sagging, missing parts of the gutter or downspout. Clogged gutters can shut down quickly, causing excessive weight on the gutter fasteners, ice dam conditions, and icy walks below.
Just like your vehicle’s preventive maintenance, it’s better to keep your roof in good condition than waiting for a serious problem to occur. Replacement of the roof and repair of the roof costs much less if you don’t have to add water damage to the other costs.