What Do I Do If My Roof Is Leaking?

Roof leaks are not always drips onto the floor.  Frequently they appear as a discolored patch on the ceiling or the wall.  If you suspect that your roof is failing, here are some things to do.

Place a bucket to catch the drips.  Put an old t-shirt in the bottom of the bucket to keep the water from splashing on the floor and to help absorb the sound.  If the paint is bubbling, you need to puncture the bubble.  That will release the water from pooling.

Move everything possible away from the drips and cover anything not movable with a thick plastic tarp.

Try to dry everything out.  That includes the carpet, furniture, woodwork, etc.  This will prevent staining and mold from forming.  If the carpet is soaked, pull it away from the padding and keep the air moving around it to try and dry it out.

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In the meantime, call a reliable professional.  You will need someone to determine why your roof is leaking.  It could be missing shingles, a hole, failing flashing, or clogged gutters.

Also, call your insurance agent.  Find out what is and is not covered and how much deductible you will be responsible for.  Take photos for documentation for your insurance claim.

The important thing is to not wait.  Take care of the issue as soon as possible.  That means using a roofing contractor to fix the problem.  If at all possible get quotes from several companies, a minimum of three.  Get details on what will and will not be done.  In other words, watch out for hidden costs and extras

When it comes to choosing the final company, make sure they are licensed, insured, and will take care of any permits.  Make sure the roofer will locate and repair all the damaged wood before putting on a new roof.  Of course, you will need to know the life expectancy of the new roof and all the guarantees and warranties that go along with it.  It is also a good idea to ask about how to maintain the new roof.

Once everything is back to normal, try to determine why the roof leaked in the first place.

  • Check all surrounding trees for any branches that may have punctured through the roof or branches that scraped over the surface.  Have an arborist trim anything necessary.
  • Keep gutters and downspouts clean and clear.  Leaves, birds’ nests, dirt, and other debris can easily accumulate.
  • Check around the chimney for any cracks and to be sure all the flashings are secure.

Prevention is always the best cure.  The cost of a regular inspection is far less expensive than the clean up costs after a leak has made it all the way into the house.

If you have any questions or concerns about the condition of your roof, contact us at Vanity Roofing.  We are professionals, fully licensed and insured, and are Ottawa’s premier roofing company.  We are happy to answer your questions and to help you in an emergency.

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