April 30, 2021

2 Key Things to Do If Your Roof Is Leaking

12 Key Things to Do If Your Roof Is Leaking: A guide for Melbourne Homeowners

There are few things as stressful as a leaky roof. The sound is continuous and irritating, the damage can be extensive, and it's hard to know what to do about it.

This blog post will give you seven steps to take when your roof starts leaking so that you can stop worrying-and start fixing!

If you're reading this blog post, it's likely that your roof is leaking. You might be wondering what to do next. 

The first thing you need to do if your roof is leaking is determine the cause of the leak so you can fix it as soon as possible. 

There are three common causes for leaks: bad weather, poor workmanship and wear and tear on the roof itself.

If your roof is leaking due to poor workmanship, you will need the help of a professional contractor or handyman who has experience with leaky roofs and knows how to repair them correctly. 

If there's wear and tear on the roof, then it may be time for some maintenance-but make sure you do this right away!

Roof leaks aren’t fun. Your home is a place that should make you feel safe and protected from the outdoors. 

Unfortunately, outside elements like rain can creep their way into your house whether you like it or not. Incidents happen, and when they do, it’s best to take action as soon as possible — especially when there’s a possibility of water damage to your home.

If you find that your roof is leaking, there are some key things you can do to manage the situation and minimise any potential damage from the water.

Here are the twelve key steps to follow:

STEP #1: Turn Off Electricity and Water

First off you want to  stop electricity and water from running through your house. 

This is done by turning off the main switch to your home, or shutting off any individual faucets that are leaking on their own.

STEP #2: Move Things Out of the Way

It’s bad enough that you’ve discovered that your roof is leaking. The last thing you want is to ruin your precious belongings in the process. 

If there’s a leak over your bed, clothing, or furniture, it’s time to clear the area!

Water damage can completely destroy precious belongings, and nobody wants that. 

Not to mention, some fabrics trap water and create a dreadful mildew smell. 

So whatever you can push out of the way, do it ASAP!

STEP #3: Contain the Water

If you have a leaking roof, try to contain it as much as possible. Grab buckets, bins, towels, and anything else you can find to capture the water to reduce the impact and damage that water can have on your home.

Not to mention, it could cause water damage to your floors. Make sure you have several containers ready to capture the water before it can get out of hand.

STEP #4: Call a Professional

Once you've done all that, call your roofer and tell them about the leak. 

A professional roofing contractor can help assess damage faster than you might be able to do so on.

Roofers will come out to inspect the roof as soon as possible after being notified of an emergency situation like this one.

They will manage all necessary repairs to stop the water from leaking out any longer.

STEP #5: Contain the water pressure

A sagging bulge hanging from your ceiling is a sign that there’s water collecting in that spot. Although it might seem unwise to poke a hole in the area, do it. If you leave it, the water could spread and cause more serious damage to the ceiling.

sagging ceiling due to water damage

Plus, it could eventually erupt on its own and create a larger mess. Use a screwdriver to carefully puncture the lowest point of the bulge, and put a bucket underneath it to catch the water. Several punctures may be necessary, depending on the size of the leak.

STEP #6: Place a tarp on the roof

If you are unable to get your leaking roof fixed right away, put a tarp on the roof to protect from further damage.

When the roof is safe enough to climb, cover the problem area with a tarp. Sometimes the problem areas are hard to find. 

If you are having trouble, try to determine the problem area based on where the leak is inside your home.

If you are unsure of the problem area, try covering your entire roof with tarps for now and then make repairs once you find out where they leak is coming from.

STEP #7: Take Photos for Insurance Documentation

Do you want to know what to do if your roof is leaking? It’s this step! Documenting your damages will come in handy when you file your home insurance claim if the damage is eligible for a claim. 

We cannot overstate how important it is to take photos and document everything.

Not only does it show the severity of the roof damage, but also the other items that were compromised. 

If your television, computer, furniture, bedding, or kitchen were ruined by the roof leak, document it. Your insurance could potentially fix the roof and replace the items you lost.

STEP #8: Call your insurance company ASAP

This step is important because you may be entitled to a claim for damage caused by the leak, and it also gives your insurance company time to process your claim.

STEP #9: Get in touch with your mortgage company

If you have a home loan, it’s important to keep the lender up to date on any leaks or damage.

If they aren't aware of anything going wrong and something happens that affects their security interests – such as an insurance claim for roof repairs - then this could result in them refusing you a home loan in the future.

STEP #10: Check for Damage

If you’ve found that one spot on your roof that was causing all of these leaks, it might be time to check up and see if there are more areas around the house with similar damages.

You can inspect things like gutters or flashing by looking closely to make sure that the gutters are not clogged or blocked by debris and that they are in the right spot.

This is a good time to inspect your roof for any other problems too, like missing tiles or loose screws.

If there's wear and tear on the roof, it may be time for some maintenance--but make sure you do this right away!

STEP #11: Clean Gutters & Downspouts

If you find out that there are more leaks than just one area on the roof, it might be because of an issue with a blocked gutter or downspout.

If you find that your gutters or downspouts are full of leaves, sticks, small rocks and other debris then it’s time to clean them out so they can do their job properly!

Blocked or Broken Gutter

Blocked gutters can lead to water getting into your home

Take a look at the roof flashing to ensure that it is still in place and not corroded.

You may need to call a roofing contractor if you find that your flashing has come loose, or it’s been severely damaged by the elements.

Inspect around the chimney area as well for any leaks exiting from it as this can be where many roof leaks originate from - this can be done with caulking material or a sealant.

Some common signs of a leaking roof are discoloured or stained ceiling tiles, peeling paint on the ceiling joists and water damage to your ceilings.

Check for dampness in areas surrounding your doors inside the home as well as mould growing near windows - this can be an indication that rain is entering through small openings in your roof.

If water is entering the home from your roof, this can lead to mould growth and cause damage to ceilings within a short period of time - check for any signs that indicate leaks around the skirting boards or in other areas where there are visible gaps.

STEP #12: Continue Regular Roof Maintenance

After the roof is fixed and things are back to normal, there’s more work to be done. 

Doing routine maintenance on your roof is the best way to control leaks. Your roof takes on a lot of wear and tear, and it’s exposed to harsh outside elements. 

Routine roof maintenance includes:

  1. Inspecting for any trees that may have grown too close to your roof, and, if so, cutting back limbs and branches
  2. Making sure gutters and downspouts have not become clogged with leaves or any other debris. Water must be able to run away from your house as designed.
  3. Checking for any damage after severe weather such as loose or missing shingles
  4. Looking for any cracks in the chimney
  5. Locating and replacing any broken or cracked tiles
  6. Sealing around chimney stack and fixing any flashing

Weather conditions like rain, snow, and hail weaken the tiles over time. Ensure that your house stays in good condition by keeping major systems, such as your roof, properly maintained.

If Your Roof Is Leaking, Call the team at Herrick Roofing.
We Will Fix It For You.

When your roof is leaking, don’t panic! 

Sure, it’s a huge inconvenience to have a leaking roof. But if you follow the steps above, they’ll help you get the situation under control. 

With that said, there’s only so much you can do on your own and you’ll need professional assistance.

Do you need roof repair services for your home? If so, we’ve got you covered. We’re located in Croydon, and we service the surrounding areas.

Our team of roofing specialists are happy to assist you. Also, you can take advantage of our free roof inspection to determine your roofing needs!

Tailored solutions just for you

If you would like to hire an expert to inspect your roof and give it a clean bill of health, click the button below to request a free roof inspection.

About the Author

Nick Herrick is the owner of Herrick's Roofing a respected roofing contractor who services residential home owners in Croydon and Melbourne's Eastern Suburbs. Nick and his team can handle all issues with your roof.

Nick Herrick

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