Dangers of a Leaky Roof

12 February 2014
Prepare your Home for Spring
5 March 2014
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Dangers of a Leaky Roof



There are many different household problems that can be put off. However, a roof leak repair is something that should be of the highest priority on your list of home maintenance issues.

Roof leaks develop for many reasons, for example, improper roof installation, wind or storm damage, or lack of roof maintenance. Another important factor is age of your roof.

So why is even a small roof leak so critical for your entire household? Most homeowners think that a leaky roof is just a structural problem, but it can actually pose many more safety and even health risks. Constant water intrusion will eventually work down from the attic area to the very foundation of the house. Many problems with a leaking roof are difficult to detect and cause a lot of damage.

You should also consider that leaving a roof leak without attention can become a very costly problem. At PINNACLE GROUP, our main advice is not to postpone and take care of any roof issues immediately.

Main Roof Leak Causes
The reason for appearance of a roof leak can range from deteriorated shingles to improper function of flashing. Whatever the cause is, this problem with your roof allows water intrusion and doesn’t protect your home properly.

Sure, the smaller the leak, the fewer problems you have, but any leak size will cause water damage. And of course, the longer it takes to fix the issue, the more extensive the damage becomes.

It is Only the Beginning…
It is pretty obvious that the initial dangers of a roof leak are damage to the attic area and items stored there. If there is no attic, or the size of the leak is simply big enough, it will damage the ceiling.

Affected ceiling paint will darken and ceiling plaster may bubble and expand. The leaking water also will damage paint and plaster on nearby walls. You can also expect damage on ceiling-mounted lights and fans.

In the Long Run…
Talking about long-term hazards, it is of course mold and rot that can spread in other parts of your home. The affected roof trusses will weaken impacting the home’s structural integrity.

Let’s discuss some of the long-term dangers more closely.

Mold and Mildew
One of the more serious consequences of a leaking roof is mold and mildew growth. Mold can spread throughout the home’s structure, to HVAC system and then to the rest of the house through the vents, where it can invade carpets, furniture, and even clothing.

Black mold is the most common type resulting from chronic water intrusion. Toxic black mold growth is rare, but even non-toxic black mold attacks wood framing, ceiling tiles, and wall and floor coverings. Mold is difficult to get rid of, and it can cost a lot of money.

Health Issues
Mold spores continue to be produced and will lead to allergic reactions, asthmatic symptoms, and more serious health problems.

Mold and mildew can lead to serious health issues, especially for those with high sensitivity – issues include nasal congestion, rhinitis, inflammations and asthma. The first signs of mold growth are dark spots on the ceiling or a musty smell. That is why the roof will need to be checked for damages as soon as possible.

Fire Hazard
If your electrical wiring is present in an attic or ceiling, a leaky roof could pose a fire threat caused by wires that have shorted. It is highly recommended to turn off electricity to the area that’s affected, and have an electrician examine the area that is wet.

Slip and Fall Hazard
A severely leaking roof can cause water to puddle on the floor. This may not seem like a huge risk, but if you have an active family, and especially if you have children who like to run, you need to get that water mopped up to prevent human spills. Again, call PINNACLE GROUP to help eliminate the risk.

Stop Wasting Energy
High utility bill is another side effect of a leaking roof, as water intrusion caused by it is detrimental to the insulation in attic area. Your cellulose or fiberglass insulation becomes saturated, and it takes a long time for it to dry out.

If care is not taking and the leak is ignored and left for a long time, we talk about chronic water intrusion, which depletes the insulation significantly and lowers its R-value. What does it mean for you? It means your home loses heat and cool air, which results in higher utility bills.

Structural Integrity of Your Home
The most obvious consequence of a leaking roof is the damaged rafters, ceiling joists, and wall framing. Fascia boards and exterior trim can also become victims of water intrusion. Chronic roof leaks lead to wood deterioration. Weakened rotten roof framing (rafters, ridge beams, wall plates) causes serious problems that require professional contractor like PINNACLE GROUP to repair. You can also face expensive wood framing repairs, if water leaks down into ceiling joists and walls. Spongy and weak water-damaged wood can end up in peeling paint, damaged ceilings, and buckled wall coverings.

Structural damage is inevitable, if there is a serious and long-standing roof leak. That means that a good chunk of deteriorated ceiling could give way and fall, damaging anything underneath. You would surely hate to find your laptop or television under a collapsed ceiling, but it would be even worse if you were under it.

You Need to Fix That Roof Leak NOW!
In order to avoid all these unpleasant worries and troubles, not only with your roof and structural integrity of your home, but also potential health issues, we recommend repairing a leaky roof as soon as the problem was detected.

Use fans if necessary to dry everything that gets wet, including walls and support beams. Placing tarps and plastic on the exterior of your roof will help to prevent rain from leaking into the home, but a permanent solution is necessary to protect your house.

Contact PINNACLE GROUP at 7 Upper Gerald Griffin Street, Limerick (0863114590 / 061609865) to make sure the job is done correctly.

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