It Might Not Be Your Roof

When water is entering your house in places it shouldn’t be, usually the first assumption made is that the issue is with your roof. However, when it comes to water leaks and water damage, there are many misconceptions around the components of your home build to address. From the windows, to the walls … there could be another cause.

Here are 7 elements to have a professional check along with inspecting your roof. NOTE : *Call a licensed professional*

1. Chimney

While being a staple functional and architectural feature to most houses, Chimneys are likely the number one nuisance on your roof when it comes to leaks.  Dormers- If chimneys are the number one cause for leaks. Dormers would have to be a close second.  They can add character to the house but with every feature you add to a roof also comes with additional difficulties in roofing and waterproofing.  The roofer will likely have little to do with the construction and waterproofing of the dormers of a new home.  The Framing / Cornice crew will be responsible for the dormer.  They are often most concerned with aesthetics and production.  This leaves the “door open” for water entry issues.  

2. Windows

Don’t be fooled by slick marketing terms such as “self-flashing, weather proof, energy efficient” windows are also installed by the framers and not all waterproofed equally.  Windows can become a tricky leak to find and a costly repair if not installed properly.  

3. Pipe Flashing

The average house can have up to a dozen penetrations for the plumbing and mechanical systems.  These allow venting of gases and air but without proper care are maintenance they become a minefield of potential leaks.  

4. Siding

When above the roof siding has to be installed correctly and with the correct moisture barrier because it becomes part of the roof system. Any rot or gaps in the siding are an easy entry point for water to show up in your home. 

5. Stone & Stucco

NO IT IS NOT WATERPROOF!!! One of the biggest misconceptions in construction is that concrete, masonry, and stucco are impervious to moisture.  This could not be further from the truth.  Instead all the products act like a huge sponge and will absorb large amounts of water.  Without the correct flashings and waterproof barriers/backings this water will easily be able to flow into the house. 

6. HVAC

When located in the attic they could pose as a roof leak. HVAC units all produce water if the water is not exiting the house in its intended fashion; water will show up in ceilings.  Problems such as clogged drain lines, excess condensation, non-functional drain pans will all pose as a roof leak. 

7. Water Pipes

Homeowners often forget how many gallons of water travel through their house every day in the pipes located in the attic.  When these pipes start to fail this water has no place to go but into the house.  These can be some of the easiest leaks to pinpoint because the lines will have pressure and can dump large amounts of water.  They will also be present when there is no rain or snow falling outside the house.