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7 Common Causes of Roof Leaks

Hurricane Damaged Roof

It’s one of those moments all property owners dread: noticing that wet stain creeping across your ceiling. The sad truth is, if you own property, you will experience a roof leak at some time or other. Unfortunately, just like we can’t predict the rain– and in Florida, we get plenty of it!– we can’t predict when the roof will leak, either.

Whether you’re planning an inspection of your roof or looking for the cause of a leak, this list of the top seven causes of roof leaks should help you spot potential problems. Be careful if you’re planning on stepping up on the rooftop yourself. You can damage your roof simply by walking on certain features, and obviously a fall could cause serious damage to you as well.

1. Bad Installation

Had a professional on your roof recently? It could be that your contractor didn’t install something properly or used cheap, low-quality materials to fix your roof. A seal may be missing or damaged, or something may not be installed correctly. For instance, if a contractor drags items over the roof cap without protecting it, this can cause damage. Poor installation of gutters can also prevent water from draining away from roof properly and cause leaking.

2. Broken or Missing Shingles

The good news about this problem is it’s one you can spot from the ground. Your roof should look pretty uniform, so you should see dark spots where shingles are missing or lifted. A missing shingle is a chink in your home’s armor against the forces of nature.

3. Broken Seal in Roof Valley

Just like the name implies, a roof valley is where two planes of your roof join together. Rainwater rushes down the sloped surfaces of your roof and down these valleys, so if you have a broken seal in this area, you’re bound to see water inside your house.

4. Broken Seal Around Roof Vents

These vents allow rooms like the bathroom to expel moisture through the roof. A seal surrounds each vent where it pokes up through the roof, but over time in the sun and wind, these seals can become brittle and crack or chip away. Any crack in those seals will allow water in.

5. Cracks in Flashing

Over time, flashing or tar sealer can deteriorate and crack, causing a roof leak. Sometimes the culprit is simply wind or rain damage. Hail can also damage roof shingles and seals.

6. Lack of Maintenance

Another significant cause of roof leaks is a lack of good roof maintenance. Remember to empty your gutters and remove debris from your roof regularly. Gutters filled with leaves or piles of debris on your rooftop can interrupt the flow of water, trapping it in puddles and allowing it to leak into the house.

7. Old Roof

Any roof will start to leak at some point in time. Roof materials simply aren’t made to last forever, and sooner or later, some part of the roof will break down and need repair or replacing.

Hidden Damage Caused by Roof Leaks

One of the big problems with a roof leak is that it can cause so much invisible damage. Water leaks in, drops down between your walls, and, especially here in Florida, that moisture quickly begins to grow even bigger problems, like mold and mildew. How do you even know that stuff is happening? You might notice a musty smell or see a stain on the wall.

When you have a licensed public adjuster from Five Star Claims Adjusting inspect your home, they’ll take readings using a moisture meter to find out what’s hiding within your walls and ceilings.

Claims Adjusters uses moisture meter to determine whether roof damage has allowed water behind walls.

How to Get a FREE Roof Inspection

If you think you may have some damage to your roof, or you’ve already seen signs of a leak, call Five Star today to schedule a FREE 11-point inspection of your property. With the 11-point inspection, one of our certified public claims adjusters will come to your home at a time convenient for you and check the entire building, top to bottom, for any problems. We have licensed public adjusters across the state of Florida, and the inspection is totally free. You won’t get a better offer than that!

In addition to a thorough inspection, Five Star’s certified public adjusters are experts at navigating the process of filing a property insurance claim. Five Star can help you not only assess any damage you have, but we’re also the only licensed professional legally allowed to advocate for you in your property insurance claim. We’re the experts, and the even better news is, we’re on your side. Schedule your free inspection today!