South Florida’s weather can wreak havoc on your roof with strong winds, heavy rain and scorching sunny days. It goes without saying the roof over your head deserves the best maintenance and service to keep you safe and comfortable. You might think a small leak doesn’t drastically affect your roof so it can wait – WRONG! A leaking roof, no matter how big or small the leak is can ruin insulation, be a breeding ground for mold and damage the interior walls, ceilings and wooden framings of your home.
Causes Of A Leaking Roof
Here are the most common causes of a leaking roof to lookout for:
Age of Your Home
Roofing materials, like asphalt shingles, eventually get old and worn. Constant expansion and contraction during change of temperature causes a roof to age resulting in weakness and brittleness. Added to that, direct sun rays focused on your roof year-in year-out will eventually lead to the tar that holds the shingles together, to melt.
How to avoid this: Make sure you do regular maintenance and checks around your roof to avoid any serious incidents. Should you be able to anticipate that your shingles are nearing the end of their life expectancy, you will be able to budget for roof repairs and maintenance to avoid any serious leak damage.
Missing or cracked shingles are sure to cause leaks when the next tropical storm comes to town. Loose shingles can occur for many reasons but are mostly impacted by weather conditions.
How to avoid this: Be proactive in the maintenance of your roof. If you find a shingle in your garden, get moving! If you find a loose shingle during regular maintenance, don’t wait for it to fall off; replace it as soon as possible. If you spot a cracked shingle, replace it. The vulnerability of the shingle will allow water to get in and cause damage.
Holes can be caused by squirrels or raccoons or from a previous storm – these holes can also be caused by minor occurrences like misplaced nails however, over time the hole will grow and become a problem.
How to avoid this: Yes, you guessed it, regular maintenance, cleaning and servicing. If you never get you roof inspected you won’t spot these holes until water starts dripping through your home.
Complex Roof Architecture
Although it may look great, a unique roofline can cause some complications if it is not properly sealed. Down water will find its way in to the smallest unsealed section of your roof.
How to avoid this: You can install a leak barrier, which keeps water flowing off your roof.
Clogged gutters mean that rain water is not able to travel away from your roof or your housing foundations.
How to avoid this: Simple; keep your gutters clean and free of any buildup of leaves and dirt.
Flashings are thin strips of metal installed at vulnerable points for leaks around your roof. Leaks can occur when flashing is not sealed properly for example around a chimney which is bent at a 90-degree angle. Flashing can rust or crack and therefore allow water to leak in.
How to avoid this: Make sure your flashing is done properly should you make any changes to the structure of your roof and/or chimney. Flashing checks will be included in your regular roof maintenance and will help prevent any damage.
My Roof Is Leaking, Now What?
Bulges and discoloration in your ceiling are a clear sign that water is most likely pooling on the other side. Other signs you may notice are dark spots and sagging Small leaks don’t just disappear, they need to be fixed. A roof leak can be a sign of a much bigger problem and you should contact a professional roofing company immediately.