Roof leaks are a problem in any weather, but a roof that starts to leak during a heavy rainstorm can quickly turn into a major emergency. Unfortunately, rainy weather is when a roof leak is most likely to happen. Storms can catch us by surprise.
If your roof suddenly starts leaking during a storm, there are several simple steps you can follow to minimize the damage before Pittsburgh water damage experts arrive to take over. Prevent escalating damage and help contain the leak before it spirals out of control.
Most of the time, a roof leak will form a small puddle in the attic and/or ceiling until it finds an escape route–usually something like a light fixture or heating register. Pay attention to any danger signs. You may first see or hear drops of water falling, or you may notice a dark spot spreading on the ceiling. Act quickly to minimize the damage. The very first thing you should do is to collect the water; use the garbage pail you put outside for waste disposal. These containers are large and most have wheels, making them easier to move than heavy pots and pans.
If any electronics are near the leak, move them now and unplug anything else nearby. The last thing you want is an electrical fire, and it’s important to move any potential hazards away as quickly as possible. Put down drop cloths, garbage bags or tarp on the floor to make sure that carpeting and flooring stay dry as well.
If the leak is visually spreading on your ceiling but has not broken through yet, you can poke a small hole into the ceiling to allow the water to drain. This allows you to control the leak before the pooled-up water gets too heavy and causes a ceiling collapse. Pooled-up water can eventually collapse or leak into your walls, lighting fixtures, or around wiring.
Now that you’ve contained the damage, it’s time to try and locate the original point of entry. The best place to start in the attic. Grab a flashlight. You may also want to take another bucket or large container with you to capture the water closer to the source. If your attic insulation is fiberglass, wear gloves and eye protection as well.
Look for any major gaps, holes, or visible damage. If there are no visible holes, look at where the water is pouring in, but keep in mind that the original hole may still be hidden. If your roof is sloped, the hole may be on the outside and the water may have flowed downward before entering. Leave it to the professionals to get on your roof to inspect the outside, and avoid risking injury or further damage to your roof.
If you are catching any water in the attic, don’t put your container right on top of the ceiling tile or drywall because it could fall through when it fills up. Instead, put a piece of scrap wood across the joists and put the bucket to catch any leaks.
Wait for the rain to let up before you attempt to go on the roof. Exercise extreme caution when going on the roof. Don’t attempt to access the roof without taking adequate safety precautions. Water damage restoration professionals will respond within the hour to your call, let them get up on the roof to inspect.
Tarps may seem like a good idea because they can prevent further rain from entering your home. Because it would be unsafe to climb on the roof during a storm, however, a tarp is not the best choice when you first notice a leak. If you are experiencing a roof leak, follow the steps above to minimize your damage, then call Xpert Restoration for leak repair services.
Xpert Restoration is certified and experienced in high-quality water restoration in Pittsburgh. Not only do we use the industry’s best tools and equipment for water damage restoration, they also take special care to make sure your property is safe and secure during the restoration process.
When you have water coming through the roof, stay safe and get a Pittsburgh expert in immediately to create a plan of action to restore the property as quickly and efficiently as possible.