How to Find the Cause of a Roof Leak

Roof leaks are the leading causes of water damage all over the globe. It is of paramount importance to identify the leaks on time to cushion yourself from loses that could arise from water damage. For instance, the moist conditions inside your house can lead to growth of molds that lower indoor air quality. Fortunately, there are hundreds of professional roof repair experts who can help you seal the leak at an affordable price.


In most cases, leaks are caused by a number of multiple factors that have a direct impact on the status of the roofing materials. Let us look at some of the ideal conditions for roof leak investigations.

  • To track the root source of a leakage, it is recommendable to see the leakage as it occurs instead of depending on the signs of leaks such as stain patches on the ceiling. However, the stains can still be used to locate the roof leaks but they are not effective in revealing the real causes.
  • One of the best times of tracing a roof leakage is during rainy or snow weather conditions. Alternatively, you can carry out a water test on the roof surface. All you need to do is saturate parts of the roof that you suspect are faulty using a garden hose until water leaks into your living space.

How to Locate the Source of Roof Leaks

This is one of the most common questions among homeowners. Here are some expert tips on how to locate the exact source of the leak.

  • The first step entails confirm that the source of water on your home interior is a result of roof leakage and not other house components such as faulty tap, roof drains, condensation, HVAC and rood scuppers.
  • Once you have identifying the leakage, measure its size from two fixed points. The fixed points can be a fireplace chimney, perpendicular exterior walls, or any other component that extends from the ceiling to the roof surface or attic space.
  • Climb into your attic to identify the exact location of the leak on the underside of your roofing deck using the measurements that you took. Take note of the surface where the leak is dripping from and mark it. Note that the actual entry point of water into your attic space may be different from where the leak is showing on the interior. Hence, it is recommendable to inspect your entire attic.
  • Measure the water entry point from two fixed points such as vents, chimneys, and vent pipes for bathrooms. You can also use two perpendicular exterior walls to take measurements if the roof penetrations are not visible.
  • Now, move to your roof and apply the same measurements that you took from the attic space on the roof surface. The depth of soffit over hangings and depth of exterior bearing walls can affect your measurements. Hence, it is recommendable to adjust your measurements to encompass these two factors to get the best results.
  • Finally, locate the approximate water entry point and begin working outward in concentric circles from the location of the leak. Remember that tampering with the roof system can result in additional leaks. Hence, make sure that all openings are sealed completely to avoid the problem from recurring in future.

Additional Sources of  Roof Leaks

If you identify a roof leak, you can either hire a professional roofing contractor or repair it yourself if you have the skills and materials required. It is recommendable to carry out thorough background research to ascertain that the leak is caused by an opening in your roofing system to avert diagnostic fee that the service providers charge if they find that, the problem is unrelated to the roof.

Some of the possible causes of leaks include:

  • Pest Infestation
  • Plumbing leaks
  • Air conditioning leaks
  • Condensation

Follow these expert tips and recommendations to identify the leaks and apply the most appropriate repairs to save time and money that would have been spent on wrong repairs.

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