Think You Have A Roof Leak? Tips to Perform Your Own Inspection

How to Inspect a Roof to Determine if it Needs RepairRoof leaks can be seriously damaging to your Minnesota home, and can even have a negative impact on your property value. Being able to recognize the signs of a roof leak and knowing what to do if you have a leak can help you take care of your home and increase its value.

Know The Signs

Roof leaks can take many forms. The warning signs of a roof leak will depend on the type of leak affecting your roof. Some of the most common signs of a roof leak include:

  • Mold on the walls in rooms where no moisture should be present (not in the bathroom or kitchen).
  • Brown stains on the walls or ceiling.
  • Bubbling paint.
  • Peeling paint.
  • Mysterious puddles on the ground.
  • Wet spots on the ceiling.

Typically with a roof leak, these problems will be directly related to the weather. You’ll notice these problems grow when it rains or snows, and when the weather is dry these problems stop. If these problems happen when there’s no rain or snow, this could be an indication of a pipe leak, condensation or a ventilation problem.

Perform an Exterior Inspection

If you suspect that your home has a roof leak, perform an exterior inspection first. Walk around the perimeter of your house with binoculars to inspect the shingles. Indications of roof damage include:

  • Curling shingles, indicating that the roof is old and nearing the end of its lifespan
  • Sunken areas on the roof, which indicate that the roof has a weak spot
  • Missing shingles, which could indicate either improper installation of the roof, or that the roof is nearing the end of its lifespan

After walking around the perimeter, use a ladder to get up close to the roof. You don’t need to physically get on the roof, but you should get close enough to see the roof clearly and in detail. Look inside the gutters. If the roof is in good condition, you may see a few asphalt granules inside the gutters, but not many. If the shingles are old and needing replacement, you’ll likely see piles of granules inside the gutters. If this is the case, you’ll also see granules at the base of the downspouts.

Perform an Interior Inspection

If the results of your exterior inspection were inconclusive, you may want to perform an interior inspection. To do this, go up into your home’s attic. Once there, look for problems like:

  • Wet stains on the trusses and roof sheathing
  • Spots of mold on the wood
  • Soft wood that is easy to puncture with an awl or a screw driver

Keep in mind that some stains in the wood could be old and may not be indicative of an active leak. If you’re not sure whether or not your roof is actively leaking, contact a contractor who can help you decide.

Contact A Roofing Professional

Roofs are not easy to fix, and homeowners who try to fix a roof leak in their own Maple Grove home are likely to do more damage than good. In fact, homeowners who try to fix their own roof leaks may ruin their roof and negatively impact the value of their home. If you discover that your roof is leaking, contact a roofing professional for help. Your roofing contractor can quote you a price for repair, or may recommend replacement. When looking for a roofing professional, be careful to hire someone who is licensed, bonded, insured and experienced.

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