In the southern half of Florida, surprise storms are a thing that happens frequently, so being prepared will ensure that your home is protected from the elements. That being said, if you notice a suddenly-apparent leak during or directly following a storm, there are a few simple steps you can take to mitigate the damage until your roofer arrives to perform the proper repairs.
Your roof is leaking. Now what?
Imagine waking up the morning after a rainstorm to find a wet spot spreading on the ceiling, a puddle on the floor, or a water-filled paint bubble forming on the wall or ceiling. Now that your morning routine is ruined, you’ve got to mitigate the damage and find the source of the leak. While the leak is probably the result of a roof breach, there are a couple of things you can check to be sure before taking more drastic action.
First thing’s first. If any electronics are located near the leak, move them and unplug anything else nearby. Then, place a container underneath the apparent leak to catch falling water. Clean up as much water as possible to try to prevent further damage to your home or belongings.
In the case of a water-filled paint bubble, carefully puncture the bubble to release the accumulated water into a bucket. This is important because pooling water places excessive weight on the structural components of your home, placing your ceiling in danger of collapsing.
Begin your investigation in the attic. Is your water heater or HVAC unit located in the attic? If they are, check them first, as they could be leaking. Check the ceiling of the attic. If you see an obvious wet spot forming, or signs of mold, mildew or water damage, you may have a pre-existing roof leak that may have become apparent due to the most recent storm.
Do not risk going up onto the roof. Leave the roof examination to the professional roofers. Walking on your roof can cause additional damage and puts you at risk for serious injury.
Call your trusted local roofer. While you may be feeling the urgency to get the work started, make sure you perform the following checks to make sure you choose a competent, trustworthy roofer:
- Make sure the roofer is licensed, insured and will obtain all necessary permitting needed for the project
- Check the roofer’s online reviews and the BBB to check for complaints. Similarly, check your county’s clerk of court website to check for past or present lawsuits involving the roofer.
- Make sure the roofer does a thorough inspection and outlines all the work to be done in the contract. Make sure they agree to locate and repair any and all wood damage as part of the roofing job.
- Ask for the estimate in writing, and make sure you understand your warranty. Also, make sure that when you ask for information, your roofer is happy to provide you with transparent answers. If they’re hesitant or refuse, consider it a red flag and use caution.
- Ensure that the roofer agrees to pass all necessary municipal inspections before closing out the job.
- Finally, get quotes from at least three roofing companies. They shouldn’t diverge too much from one another, and if one does, pay careful attention to the reasons why
Do not allow the work to begin until you’ve checked off each of these requirements to your satisfaction. Beware of possible scammers, especially soon after an intense weather event.
Once you’ve done the necessary due diligence, your roofing team can begin remedying your roofing problems.
In the future, you can help prevent leaks by taking a few simple steps to ensure your roof stays in great condition.
- Trim trees. Overhanging tree branches can damage the roof, especially if they break off and fall on the roof. Furthermore, they create shade, which can contribute to a welcoming environment for mold and algae growth.
- Clean gutters. Keeping your gutters and downspouts clear of fallen leaves, acorns and twigs can prevent water from pooling and prolong the life of your roof.
- Twice-yearly inspections. You should have your roof inspected at least once a year - twice is better - so that the roofer can check the collars and flashings, look for cracked, loose or missing shingles and perform any needed repairs and maintenance before they cause massive problems.
AKVM has been serving homes and businesses in the Sarasota-Bradenton area since 2006. Our trusted and experienced roofers are ready to fix your roof swiftly after it suffers a breach, and we’ll double-check for weak spots to prevent future leaks.
Our professional roofing team serves the Sarasota-Bradenton area with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Contact us today for a free roofing estimate!