How to Repair a Leaky Roof

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A leaking roof is a problem that can cause extensive damage to ceilings, floors and drywall.

Understanding the cause of a leak can help you to decide whether or not it requires immediate attention.

While a small roof leak is often an isolated problem that can be repaired quickly and inexpensively, deteriorating conditions such as rotted roof beams, damaged flashing and rusted nails necessitate more expensive repairs or replacement of the affected areas.

Small leaks may be caused by a number of factors.

Over time, roofs may develop cracks or holes, especially when shingles are installed improperly or when repairs are botched. Water may also infiltrate through broken roof tiles.

Poor workmanship is often to blame for roof leaks.

Improperly installed shingles may wrinkle over time, allowing water to seep into the home.

Sloping roofs that drain poorly can also produce leaks.

If you are experiencing a leak in the roof area, check other areas of your home for water leaks or high humidity, and then call an experienced roofing contractor.

Call your insurance company to schedule an inspection by their adjuster before proceeding with repairs.

You should also keep in mind that your insurance company may have a limited window of time in which to resolve the issue.

The exact type of roofing material is an important consideration when you are trying to determine the cause and extent of damage caused by a roof leak.

Asphalt shingles are extremely susceptible to blows from surrounding tree branches, heavy rain or hail.

Shingles that are damaged or warped can allow water to seep into the home, causing damage that may not be visible until long after the rainy season has ended.

Wood shakes and shingles made from recycled plastic and rubber can often tell whether a roof leak is caused by wind-related damage.

Metal roofs are also wind-resistant but may be difficult to repair in the event of damage due to their weight and composition.

Repairs to a leaking roof may be as simple as replacing a small area of damaged shingle or tile.

However, more common causes of damage include worn-out flashing and missing pieces of underlayment.