The do it yourself resource for homeowners from home improvement professionals.

How to Find a Roof Leak

Roof leaks are just one of the many problems that can frustrate homeowners and finding a leak can often be a difficult task. Luckily, it only takes a few items and some patience to find where your leak is instead of trying to chase it down during the next storm. Here, our roofing repair experts have some suggestions for how to find a roof leak:

  1. First, you’ll want to see if you can locate your roof leak from your attic. Be very careful during spring or summer, given the temperature in your attic can easily exceed 120 degrees.
  2. Take your flashlight up to your attic and look for things like black streaks, mold, and/or water stains. (If the underside of your roof is covered with insulation, make sure you’re wearing gloves and look for areas of deterioration.)
  3. If you can locate any of these things, follow their trail upward and you should find the source of the problem.
  4. For vaulted ceilings, you’ll likely have to inspect your roof for the leak.
  5. First, take your ladder outside and position it so that it sits sturdily against your home.
  6. Climb up to your roof and carefully locate where you think the problem may be.
  7. Look for things like missing or broken shingles, rot, or an object (such as a nail) that may be piercing the roof. Also check areas with seals, such as your roofing vent and flashing. (The seals may be old and leaking.)
  8. If you still can’t find the leak, recruit a friend or family member to help.
  9. First, have your helper stand inside the house in the attic.
  10. Next, use your garden hose to thoroughly soak the area of your roof where you think you may have a leak.
  11. As you soak the roof, have your helper look for any signs of water dripping inside. Once they locate the drip, you can pinpoint where you have a leak.
  12. Once you’ve figured out where your leak is, make sure you get it fixed as soon as possible. Leaks only get worse and can lead to major roofing damage, structural damage, and even interior damage. We’re happy to help at any stage. Simply give us a call!

Tools & Materials

  • Flashlight
  • Gloves
  • Ladder
  • Helper
  • Garden hose

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