Unexpected Complications of a Leaky Roof

Water damage inside a home caused by a leaky roof.

Every homeowner has their own list of projects that need to be done around the house. Some, like new flooring, different countertops, or maybe painting rooms, don’t necessarily require immediate attention. Others, however, do need immediate attention. Under that heading you’ll find a leaky roof, which can represent a real threat to your home’s overall health and your financial budget.

Leaky roofs need to shoot to the top of your home project list when they occur for a number of reasons. Even if you don’t see immediate signs other than water on the underside of your decking, water getting in under your roof can have whole-home implications. Eventually, that water will make its way down to your foundation, and all along the way it can cause major problems.

Energy Bills

The most immediate threat posed by a leak in your roof is an increase in your home’s heating and cooling expenses. When water invades your home and drips and pools in your attic’s insulation, it leads to insulation clumping, which greatly reduces its effectiveness. Once the insulation is saturated, it will take a long time to dry. During that period, you may notice your HVAC system working harder to keep your home heated or cooled.

While the insulation will eventually dry out, prolonged moisture can lead to mold and mildew growth in your attic. Mold growth will continue well past the insulation drying out, leading to air quality problems in your entire home.

Structural Problems

If the leaky roof issue continues unabated, it will eventually start to wreak havoc on your home’s structure. Mold that started growing in the insulation can spread to the joists, rafters, and beams that support your roof and your ceiling, weakening them. Water that runs along beams in your roof can spread moisture problems far beyond just the point of water entry.

Over time, wet wood will begin to rot and bow under the weight of supporting your roof, leading to a sagging roof. Water that makes its way down into your walls will begin bowing them. If left unchecked, over the course of just a few years, water damage to your home’s frame can result in massive repair bills.

Fire Hazards

It may seem counterintuitive, but a leaky roof can also exacerbate your home’s fire risk. If the leaky roof’s water finds its way to an electrical junction box or outlets, it can come in contact with uncovered wires, posing an immediate shock or fire hazard. If you discover water around any type of electrical circuit, you should immediately shut down power to that area, and contact an electrician to assess the damage, in addition to a roofing contractor to address the leak.

Bottom line: whenever you discover a roof leak, getting that problem addressed needs to shoot immediately to the top of your home projects list. Contact your local roofing contractor as soon as possible, and take steps to mitigate the risk to your home caused by a leaky roof. A leaky roof problem isn’t going to go away on its own. If left unaddressed, it will only increase the amount of damage done to your home, and increase the repair bill exponentially. We can help. Our experienced team of roofing experts have the knowledge to replace your roof the right way the first time. Contact us today to schedule a free in-home estimate.


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