For those of you that have a home, an apartment complex, or a commercial building, sooner or later you’re going to have a problem with a leaky roof. This could be from a bad storm that damaged it, or it could just be because the roof has gotten old, and the shingles, metal, or other materials on it no longer hold up well. However, no matter what the reason for the leak, you definitely want to get it stopped as soon as possible, before it does any real damage to your home or business. The first thing that you should do is to find where the leak is coming from, but this is not always easy to do. Some leaks can be very small, and when water gets into a home through the roof it doesn’t always go straight down.
Sometimes it runs along a wall or a truss and leaks through the ceiling in a completely different area from where the original leak in the roof started. With that being the case you have to consider that the entire roof should be inspected unless a cursory examination shows something very obvious like a missing shingle or a hole or crack around a chimney, vent, or pipe. If you see something this easy to spot it’s likely to be the source of the leak and you could fix it simply by replacing the shingle or using liquid asphalt to seal up the hole or crack.
Most likely, though, you’ll have to inspect the roof a little bit closer than that. Usually you can get up in the attic and look for pinholes of light coming through the roof on a sunny day. If you see these and mark their position you know where the leak is coming from. If it’s a very small leak some liquid asphalt in a tube applied with a caulking gun should take care of it.
If it’s a larger leak or if there is damage to the decking under the shingles it might be better to let a professional handle it. There are easy fixes for some roofing problems, but large problems often require someone who has a lot of expertise. These more significant repairs generally shouldn’t be attempted by someone who hasn’t done them before because they can entail a lot more work than would be expected and doing them wrong can actually cause more damage to the roof than there already was.