Ever wondered why even a small roof leak is so critical for your entire household? Many homeowners think a leaky roof is just a structural problem, but it can actually pose many more safety and health risks. Constant water leakage will eventually work down from the attic area to the very foundation of the house, causing plenty of costly damage on the way. For your help, we are listing some less obvious ways a roof leak can damage your home.
- Attic and ceiling damage – As water trickles through a cracked shingle, dislodged piece of flashing or cracked bead of roofing cement, it inevitably makes it’s way to interior ceilings. Ceilings will begin to become discoloured, stained or even covered in mold or mildew. In a worst case scenario, the ceiling tiles could become flimsy, break apart and fall down to the floor. The initial dangers of a roof leak are damage to the attic area and items stored there. If there is no attic or the size of the leak is really big, it will damage the interior ceiling.
- Interior mold and mildew issue – In the longer term, one of the most serious consequences of a leaking roof is mold and mildew growth. Mold can spread throughout the home’s structure, to the HVAC system and then to the rest of the house through the vents where it can invade carpets, furniture and even clothing. Black mold is the most common type resulting from chronic water intrusion. Toxic black mold growth is rare, but even non-toxic black mold attacks wood framing, ceiling tiles and wall floor coverings. Mold is difficult to get rid of and is costly too.
- Fire hazard from water damage – If your electrical wiring is present in an attic or ceiling, a leaking roof could pose a fire threat from shorted wires. It is highly recommended to turn off electricity to the area that’s affected and have an electrician examine it.
- Health concerns from mold – Mold and mildew can lead to serious health issues, especially for those with high sensitivity, including nasal congestion, rhinitis, inflammations and asthma, according to the U.S Environmental Protection Agency. Mold spores continue to be produced once it’s present and will lead to allergic reactions, asthmatic symptoms and more serious health problems.
- Slip and fall hazard – A severely leaking roof can cause water to puddle on the floor. This may not seem like a huge risk but if you have an active family and especially if you have children who like to run, you need to get that water mopped up to prevent human spills.
- Compromised structural integrity – The most obvious consequence of a leaking roof is the damaged rafters, ceiling joists, wall framing and even fascia intrusion. Chronic roof leaks lead to wood deterioration and weakened, rotten roof framing that causes serious problems that require assistance from a professional contractor.
- Higher utility bills and wasted energy – High quality bills are another side effect of a leaking roof, as water intrusion is detrimental to the insulation in the attic area. Your cellulose or fiberglass insulation becomes saturated and it takes a long time for it to dry out. If a roof repair leak is put off for a long time, chronic water intrusion will deplete the insulation significantly and your home will lose hot and cool air, resulting in higher utility bills.
After going through the above points, the bottom line is that roof leaks are never to be taken lightly. Contact us immediately if you suspect any water intrusion.