Roof leaks can be devastating, not only because of the damage they cause in your home, but also because some are very hard to find. The complex structure of the roof and the attic space make it hard for homeowners to detect roof plumbing problems until they have caused extensive damage to the walls, insulation, and paint. Determining the source of the leak is the first step in managing the damage and protecting your structure. Here are the tips that you can follow to pinpoint the source of roof leaks in your home.
Examine the leak as it occurs
It is best to look for a leak during a rain or snow event. This is the easiest way to spot a plumbing leak in your roof. However, in most instances, you will only see the water stains afterward. In this case, you can perform a water test on the roof surface. Connect your garden hose to a tap and saturate the roof with water to create an artificial leak. Ensure that you use safety equipment and a ladder to protect yourself from falling.
Inspect the area underneath the roof
After spraying water on the surface, you need to examine the space underneath it. Check the rafters and roof decking in the attic space below the area you wet and look out for wet spots. You should also be able to see water stains on the decking or rafters. Follow these stains and trace them back to the highest point which is their source. Take note of the spot which is supposedly the origin of the leak on the upper side of the roof.
Trace the leak to the roof
Once you have located the source from underneath the roof, leave the roof to dry. Go back to the roof's exterior and transfer the measurements from the marked space underneath the roof to the surface. This is the area that you should examine. Assess it carefully, looking out for any signs of damage on that part of the roof and the surroundings. The roof may have broken shingles, or it may be dented, and all these problems can cause a leak. If you don't find the source, continue to look higher up in the roof. This is because the water may have run down the shingles before seeping into the decking and rafters.
Contact a roof plumber if you are unable to find the leak or need to have it repaired. This will protect your insulation, ceiling, walls, and paint from water damage and save you thousands of dollars in renovations.