How to Deal With a Roof Leak Until Your Roofer Arrives
While roof leaks are common even in the best roofs, they’re not a pleasure to deal with. If the damage to your roof is extensive (making it possibly life threatening) you should definitely ask a local roofer to do emergency repairs. In most cases, however, roof damage is a simple leak or an area that looks like it has water damage. When this is the predicament in which you find yourself, it can take a bit longer to get the problem fixed, either because your roofer is booked full in advance or because you want to schedule for them to come at a time that suits you best. In the meantime, dealing with the leak can be a headache. Catching drops of water in a bucket might simply not be an option for you, this is often the case for commercial building owners, where having unexpected buckets standing on the floor to catch water leaking can cause people to trip.
What Causes Roof Leaks?Roof leaks can develop for a number of reasons, but for the most part, any roof leak can be traced back to either one of two main causes for the leaks:
- Poorly installed roofing: If your roofing contractor didn’t seal all the necessary areas of your roof properly, leaks can easily develop in these areas. That’s why it’s always best to choose a contractor that based on their skill and the quality of work they do, not just price.
- Worn out roofing: Even the best roof won’t last forever. Be sure to regularly get your roof inspected by a professional so any potential problems can be fixed before they develop into leaks.
How Long Can You Leave a Leaking Roof?There’s no definite answer to how long you can leave a leaking roof before it causes damage. Many variables come in to play here, so it’s always best to play it safe and get your roof leak fixed as soon as possible. A leaking roof can cause structural damage to your building that will eventually be much more costly to fix than the original leak, so fixing a leak as soon as your can is likely to save you money on extra repairs.
Damage Caused By Roof LeaksLeaving a roof leak will cause the water to spread, this will lead to water damage in other structures in your house. Some of the most common problems caused by roof leaks include:
- Water discoloration: Water discoloration isn’t a big problem. Once a leak is fixed and your roof is dry, you can leave any discolored marks on your ceiling until you’re able to fix it. However, there’s no reason to leave a leak long enough for it to cause such damage.
- Water damage in the attic: A leaking roof can cause water damage, not only to the attic, but anything you store there. While water damage in the attic is never pleasant, this can be much worse if you store anything electronic in your attic.
- Ceiling damage: Damage to your ceiling can be much worse than just watermarks – it can also cause paint to blister, as well as damage to ceiling lights and fans if the leak is left for too long. Eventually, a leak can cause damage to walls as well.
- Mold and mildew: Mold and mildew tend to grow in any areas that are always moist. The problem with mold and mildew is that, once it starts growing somewhere in the house, it can quickly spread to other areas. This can become particularly bothersome in the bathroom, which is regularly wet.
- Electrical hazards: Everyone knows that water and electricity are a dangerous combination, and this is no different when you have roof leaks. If your roof leak spreads to an area where there’s electrical wiring, this can cause a short. To avoid the problem with a leaking roof and your wiring while you wait for your roofer, it’s best to switch off power to the area where you have a roof leak. Electrical wiring that shorts can make sparks, creating a fire hazard in your home, so never leave a roof leak in an area where you suspect you have electrical wiring running in the roof.