Roof leaks are dangerous on several fronts. They can damage insulation and trigger energy inefficiency, affect the electrical wiring, and even damage your house's structure. Some parts of the roof are more likely to leak than others are. Read below to learn about some parts of your roof that are highly vulnerable to leaks.
Flashing is the material (typically metal) that roof contractors use to waterproof roof joints. Over time, things like storms, temperature fluctuations, and foot traffic contribute to the deterioration of flashing materials. The materials might dent, crack, or loosen from the roof. Thus, areas with flashing tend to leak before other parts of the roof.
Roof contractors tend to use flashing around roof projections, such as chimneys and vents. Thus, areas around roof projections tend to be focal points for roof leaks.
Roof drainage occurs due to the action of gravity — water flows from high points to low points of the roof. Unfortunately, sections of the roof exposed to constant water tend to deteriorate faster than other parts of the roof. In addition to water, roof debris also tends to end up in the valleys, thereby interfering with drainage. The blocked water gets ample time to penetrate through the roof.
Valleys, which are V-shaped metal channels on the roof, are also the lowest parts of the roof. Thus, it makes sense that roof valleys tend to leak before other parts of the roof.
As mentioned above, flashing around skylights can deteriorate and let water into the roof. However, the skylight material itself (not the lashing around it) is also susceptible to leakage. A skylight may leak if:
- It's surface (typically glass or plastic) cracks
- The seal around the edges dries up
- Something damages the skylight's frame
To prevent leaks related to the skylight, maintain the roof, keep it clean, and inspect the skylight regularly for signs of damage.
Lastly, if your house has a chimney, it also represents a high risk of leakage. Specifically, the chimney might leak if:
- It doesn't have a cover
- Something damages the chimney cover
- The chimney bricks or mortar joints wear out
Again, regular inspection will help you to spot teething chimney problems before they become serious.
A regular roof inspection can help spot teething problems before they cause serious damage. Pay special attention to the problematic areas mentioned above during the inspection. If you do spot a problem, contact a roofing contractor for a solution before your house suffers the effects of roof leaks.