As the roofing season approaches, most homeowners start panicking about the upcoming task of roof repair. It is one of the most expensive repairs you can undertake and there is a lot of work involved in doing it correctly. I recently had to undertake roof maintenance in my home after suffering a leak, which had been occurring for quite some time.
I discovered that the leaking roof had come from two different directions – one downward, due to condensation between the roof tiles, and another upward, as a result of water seeping through the ceiling. I had to repair both parts of the damaged roof. The roofing company suggested a water absorbent sock that would be placed on top of the damaged tiles. This would prevent further damage and ensure that the water dried quickly after it was sprayed onto the roof. I was a little nervous about the idea of inserting a sock into the roof, particularly because I am not the least fan of water absorbent items!
What actually happened was a lot of water got underneath the roofing tiles and stayed there, even though they were thoroughly dry. This water must have then tracked towards the ceiling cavity, and the ceiling above. After the roofing repair contractor finished spraying water on the roof, he used a pressure washer to remove the excess water and mud, but it was still there! How could this be?
To be honest, I don’t know! Water can’t just “melt” onto your roof like that. It has to go somewhere. We know that rainwater is carried by raindrops, but how are raindrops going to find their way down a roof? I contacted several roof repair contractors to ask them about this and one of them told me:
Roofs can get damaged by a range of weather conditions, including heavy rainfall, strong winds and hail. However, water is always carried away by drains – and they are usually beneath the roofing materials. Therefore, you can only consider the roofing materials when you are inspecting the roof. If the water remains on the roof for a long time, it will gradually seep under the roofing material and into the subsurface wood, causing very serious damage. If you suspect that this has happened, then it’s time to contact a roofing repair contractor.
When I asked my roofing repair contractor what sort of damage a wet roof can cause, his first guess was shingles. He also said that he didn’t know how the water would get under the roofing shingles – perhaps the roof materials were too weak or too wet. After explaining the sort of damage that occurs when there’s a roof repair, he went on to say that he couldn’t give a definite answer.
Another common problem is damage caused by the ‘stack effect’. As the name suggests, this is where rainwater from a number of rain gutters are collected and pile up behind a roofing structure. As this water collects behind the roofing shingles, more water accumulates on the roof itself. This can cause the roof repair to become more expensive because you have to add extra shingles to the roof or else re-build your roof. If you know the sort of damage your roof is likely to incur, however, you may be able to reduce this cost by calling a roofing contractor ahead of time.
In conclusion, a roof needs to be inspected regularly. If you don’t find anything obvious, you should call a roofing repair contractor. If you spot something wrong, take action before your roof becomes too damaged to repair. Sometimes a roofing repair contractor can reduce the damage by adding extra layers of insulation or re-pointing your roof.