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Four Common Causes Of Roof Leaks

You can get most roof leaks repaired without a full replacement if you catch them early enough. Learn the four most common problems that lead to leaks, along with how to spot them.

Problem #1: Broken Shingles

Most roof leaks begin with a broken or missing shingle. Water gets under the remaining shingles and pools, making its way into the home. You don’t need a wind storm to suffer from damaged shingles. Common causes include:

  • Sun damage, which leads to cracking. This often occurs on the south side of the roof where it receives the most sun.

  • Moss growth, primarily on the north side of the roof. Moss can work its way beneath a shingle, where it lifts and breaks the shingle.

  • Outside damage, such as from falling tree limbs.

  • Normal deterioration. Asphalt shingles will eventually begin to crack and crumble as they age.

A quick inspection of the roof, even from ground level, will usually reveal any damage.

Problem #2: Insufficient Flashing

Flashing is the metal strips used to seal gaps between the roofing material and parts of your home’s structure, such as around chimneys or sky lights. Missing or damaged flashing leaves an opening for water to seep in and cause a leak.

Caulk is used along with the flashing to make a water-tight seal. As your roof ages and your house settles, gaps can open up in the flashing. Getting the gaps repaired and resealed when they are still small can prevent leaks and extend the life of your roof.

Problem #3: Weather Damage

A new leak after a storm indicates weather damage. High winds are the main culprit, because they lift and tear off shingles. Visually inspect your roof after every wind storm. A water leak may not make itself known immediately, but the visual damage to the shingles will be obvious.

Snow and ice can also result in weather damage. Sometimes the damage is as obvious as a broken shingle, while at other times ice may buildup beneath the shingle. As the ice melts, you end up with a leak inside. If you notice these ice dams forming, calling in a roofing repair specialist to help minimize the damage.

Problem #4: Soffit Issues

The metal or wooden board that runs along the underside of your roof’s overhang is called the soffit. If it gets damaged or develops a hole, water can get into your roof and cause moisture problems and leaks. The fascia board, which runs behind the gutters, can also become damaged.

Keeping your gutters cleaned out helps prevent damage. Regular visual inspections also ensure you find minor problems before they turn into major leaks.

If you suspect roof damage or a leak, getting it repaired immediately is the best course of action, pop over here for professional help. A single broken shingle may not seem like a big deal, but it can result in a costly leak. Damage also tends to grow, so where you see a small problem today is a larger repair waiting to happen.

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