Roof Repair Tips: How to find a leak in a roof emergency

Roof repair tips for homeowners

Roof repair questions to ask

Do you have water stains on your ceiling? Do the stains run across the ceiling and down the walls? Is there mold? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you have leaky roof emergency that needs repair.

The easy part is fixing it; the hard part is finding the leak. To find the source of the leak, start at the stain.

The leak source can be difficult to locate. Water can travel a fair distance before it settles on your ceiling. It often follows the path of least resistance and never flows uphill.

So look above the stain for penetrations in the roof.

If you can, check the underside of your roof through the attic (if you can). You might need a flashlight to help spot any trouble spots. Telltale signs of a leaky are water stains, black marks or mold. If you don’t have attic access, you’ll have to go onto the roof and try to find the source of the water.

Common types of roof leaks

The most common form of a leak is caused by failing joints at plumbing vents, roof vents, chimneys, dormers or anything that required a hole be placed in the roof and its covering.

If you can’t find the source, then get a friend and a water hose.

Wet down your roof in sections, starting with the area above the leak. It may take a few minutes for the water to penetrate the roof even if you are the right spot. Have your spotter stay inside to alert you when the leak appears.

This can take a while, so be patient.

If that doesn’t work, the next solution is to start removing shingles. This will uncover discolored felt paper or even rotted wood. But only do this if you are experienced. If you have reached this point, then it may be time to contact a local roofer in your area. 

Water can cause a lot of damage in a short period of time. It can cause moldy insulation, rotten wood, and damage the structural integrity of your home. Fixing the leak quick can significantly reduce your repair cost.