Do You Have a Roof Leak?
Photo credit: National Contractors

If you spot a roof leak, it could be a sign that it’s time to schedule a roof repair. It's critical to catch roof leaks before they progress into challenges that are harder and more expensive to fix or require an entire roof replacement.

Use this handy guide to stay proactive about your home's roof maintenance and resolve minor roof leak repair issues before they become expensive problems.

Photo Credit: GAF

How to Identify a Roof Leak

Not sure how to find a roof leak or identify roof problems? Learn how to identify the warning signs associated with roof leaks and damage. Look inside and outside the home for these telltale signs.

Indoor Signs of a Roof Leak

  • Ceiling and wall stains: Look for moist areas as well as yellow or discolored ceiling spots.
  • Peeling or blistering paint: Check interior walls and ceilings.
  • Moisture in the attic: Search for moist areas on the attic ceiling, wetness or leaks inside the attic after a storm, or staining on the attic ceiling or walls.
Photo Credit: GAF

Outdoor Signs of a Roof Leak

  • Decking decay: Moisture trapped in the sheathing (roof decking) can destroy roofs. Be alert for sagging decking, broken gutters, or groups of missing shingles.
  • Damaged shingles: Note any curled, torn, or missing roof shingles as they can let in moisture and water.
  • Roughed-up roof flashing: Missing or damaged weather-sealing materials around roof perimeters can lead to leaks.
  • Visible roof damage: Check for holes, debris, or other visible roof issues due to weather events, accidents, or age.

Photo Credit: GAF

Not all roof damage results from leaks. When checking for leaks, be on the lookout for excess granule loss on shingles which may indicate wind-blown debris or hail damage as well. Often times, dark streaks can indicate moss, lichen, or blue-green algae. If left unchecked these factors can create aesthetic issues. A professional contractor can help you with these concerns.

What to Do after Finding a Roof Leak

If you find a roof leak, address the issue as soon as possible. Unresolved roof leaks can lead to roof damage, moisture damage, mold, and eventually structural damage, potentially even requiring a total roof replacement.

After finding a roof leak, check the terms of your roof warranty. Contact a trusted contractor for an inspection. Consider collaborating with a roofer who is certified by a reputable manufacturer, such as a contractor certified by GAF*. Additionally, if your leaks were caused by storm damage, you might consider filing a claim with your homeowner's insurance company.

If you're debating replacing a roof versus repairing it, it's best to defer to a roofing professional. In some cases, a minor shingle repair will solve the problem. In others, such as after damage from a major storm or long-term moisture issues, a roof replacement may be necessary.

Unfortunately, roof leaks won't go away just because they're ignored, and repair costs will increase the longer the problem persists. If cost is a concern, consider financing a roof repair.

Understanding Costs

A roof repair doesn't have to take a bite out of your budget. Oftentimes, a homeowner's insurance policy will cover the cost. Keep in mind that insurance typically covers damage costs based on when the leak occurred. This means that if you wait a year to report a leak, those additional damage costs related to the untreated leak are billed to you.

Insurance often covers the costs of storm-related roof damage, but it may not cover flood-related damage. Be sure to communicate with your insurance agent if you want flood coverage for your home.

If you plan to pay out of pocket, contractors typically provide free quotes to help you understand the needed repairs as well as the material and labor costs. Even if you can afford to pay up-front, though, financing your repair can be a smart money strategy for your family.

What to Expect from a Contractor Roof Repair Quote

  • Measurement of the area that needs roof repair
  • A roof inspection
  • Advice on the best materials for the job
  • A quote that includes labor, materials, and applicable fees

Factors That Impact Your Roof Leak Repair Cost

  • The project's size, scope, and complexity
  • Which materials you select
  • Geographic location, which affects local labor costs, material supply, and code requirements

There is no need to search online for “A roof replacement near me?” or “A roof leak repair near me?" Simply contact the trusted experts at National Contractors. We are certified by GAF with the training and licensing to get your repair(s) done correctly. We are an industry leader offering unsurpassed general construction services to community associations, condominiums, management companies, engineering firms, residential and commercial property managers. When you hire National Contractors, you’re getting the best in the business.

Article and Images Courtesy: Annie Crawford for GAF

Roof Leak