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What to Do When a Roof Leaks

What to Do When a Roof Leaks
9th January 2013

Nearly every home will develop a roof leak at some point, as no matter how fine the quality of its materials and craftsmanship, no roof can last forever. The elements batter roofs day-in and day-out year-round, and over time, this results in wear and tear that leads to holes in your roofing or gaps around skylights, vent flashings and chimneys.

No matter where in your home it occurs, a roof leak requires quick attention to avoid serious damage to your home. If you've discovered a leak, follow these steps to manage the problem and seek repairs.

  • 1. Clear the area. When you first notice a leak, remove everything that you can from the affected area. This includes furniture and decorative items. If you don't have enough space to shift a large furnishing, such as a sofa, cover it with plastic or cut garbage bags to use as makeshift tarps. If a leak develops inside of a closet, remove everything from it.
  • 2. Turn off electrical power to the area if the leak is near an outlet or appliance. Unplug any small appliances or electronics as well.
  • 3. Place a bucket, garbage can or plastic bin beneath the leak to capture the water. You can eliminate the annoying sound of the drip by lining the bottom with a towel or rags.
  • 4. If you have a tile ceiling, remove the tile from around the leaking area.
  • 5. Determine the source of the leak if it's safe to do so. Having some basic information about the nature of the leak can help when you call for assistance, but we don't recommend getting onto a ladder and going up on the roof to look for the specific source. This is particularly the case if the weather is rainy or if there is ice and snow accumulated on the roof. Sometimes by going outside and studying the layout of the roof, you can determine the source of the problem. For example, you may see that the leak appears to be coming from a section of the roof where a vent is placed.
  • 6. Contact a roof plumber or roofing contractor. Here at Sydney Emergency Plumbing, we have extensive experience fixing leaks, repairing roof and wall sheeting and installing new roofs in residences. We answer our phones 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, so we can respond to your call right away.
  • 7. Ensure that the leaking area is covered to protect the interior of your home. If there is inclement weather, immediate repairs may be impossible. When repairs must be delayed, you'll want to be sure that the roof plumber or roofing contractor that you contact puts a temporary control solution in place, such as securing tarpaulins to your roof, until it is safe to make the repairs. Our roofing plumbers here at Sydney Emergency Plumbing will always use a temporary leak control solution if a project cannot be immediately completed.

For help with your leak or for more information, please contact us.

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