Written by JBS Roofing

The Most Common Causes of a Leaky Roof

When you find water coming into your home, you’ve got a leak. Although roof leaks can seem to be straightforward, there are many reasons that a roof may begin to let water into your home. By being able to identify the most common reasons a leak may form, you may be able to help your trusted roofer find a solution faster. JBS Roofing specializes in all roof types. Contact us today for a free Phoenix roofing estimate.

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The Flashing is Cracked or Old

Flashing are pieces of metal that are installed around roof penetrations. They essentially form a barrier to keep rain water from finding its way in between the shingles and the weaker areas of the roof. Over time, the metal may corrode away or the seal may crack, giving the rain access to the attic and your living space.

If the rest of the roof is in good condition, the old flashing can easily be replaced. A roofer will simply lift the surrounding shingles or tiles, pull the old sheet metal out and install new segments. Once the new flashing is sealed, the roof should stop leaking.

Your Roof is Missing Shingles

missing shinglesThere are many reasons a section of your shingles may suddenly go missing. For example, high winds or sudden heavy rains can potentially rip the shingles right off your roof. In other cases, missing shingles could indicate that your roof has reached the end of its lifespan, meaning that you are in need of a new roof. Regardless of the cause, having new shingles installed should be done quickly to avoid major water damage to the inside of your home.

Clogged or Damaged Gutters

Although you may not consider the gutters to be a part of your roof system, they actually play an important part when it comes to keeping leaks at bay. The gutters take rain water away from the roof and the foundation of your home, essentially preventing water from backing up underneath your shingles or ending up in your basement. Your gutters can easily become clogged by debris and twigs, potentially causing the rainwater to become backed up. At this point, the water only has one place to go – back up underneath the shingles and into the attic.

Improperly Sealed Valleys

The roof valleys are where two roof planes come together to create an inverted corner. While valleys can add a dynamic roof line, these areas are also generally weaker than other areas as they can collect water. If the leak is coming from a valley, you’ll see a line of water running where the seam occurs.

Depending on how severe the leak is, new leak barriers could be needed. Once the new barrier is placed down, a new layer of shingles will keep the water moving down the roof so that it can be collected by the gutters.

Improperly Installed Skylights

When installed properly, skylights can add a ton of natural light to areas of the home that may be darker. If the skylights are improperly installed, however, you’ll find wet spots and flooded floors every time it rains. If the problem is not a flashing issue, resealing the skylight could help. If the skylight was not properly fitted, more flashing could be added to keep water from running in around the edges of the skylight. In worse case scenarios, you may wish to have a new skylight installed to ensure that you won’t continue to have leaks in the future.

Your Roof has been Damaged through Use

damaged roofMany homeowners like to do their own roof maintenance to keep costs down. While DIY roof maintenance can save a few bucks, it can also result in the need for major repairs. Walking around the roof can cause serious damage to the shingles and the underlying structure. If the roof has already sustained damage, one wrong step could cause a major leak that can be difficult to identify.

In general, it is recommended that homeowners call a roofer to come out an inspect the roof. Roofers are trained to know how to properly care for the roof and complete repairs without causing more damage. Additionally, they are also more likely to find a leak that may not yet be visible from the inside of the home, potentially saving you money.