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Charleston Roofing: Article About Roof Leak Signs

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Homeowners tend to assume that they will know when their roof leaks because they will see water coming from the ceiling. The idea that leaks cause mini waterfalls in a home is a common misconception. It can take weeks or even months before the leak becomes so bad that homeowners spot the water coming from the ceiling. Those who know what to look for can identify potential leaks and call on a Charleston roofing company for help before a minor leak becomes a torrential downpour.

Leaks often occur because shingles shift and leave the underlayment exposed. High winds that pull off shingles may also tear the underlayment, which will allow water to penetrate the deck. The resulting moisture can cause the deck to rot, which then lets the moisture reach the ceiling of the house. Even a rip as small as one inch across is large enough for a leak to form.

The most common sign of a leak is bowing on the ceiling. The water coming from the roof hits the top of the ceiling and begins forming a puddle.

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Though some of that liquid might move to other parts of the ceiling, any pooling or puddling water will exert enough pressure that it causes a bow in the ceiling or the drywall. If homeowners do not address the leak, it can eventually cause a crack just below the bow.

Cracks can range in size from one inch wide to several inches across. Some homeowners may notice that drops of liquid cling to the center of the crack and drop down from the ceiling. As the leak worsens, it will cause the crack to expand, which can result in the ceiling, drywall and insulation coming down.

Leaks that occur in and around corners of the room may leave behind some telltale signs of damage, most particularly peeling drywall. Drywall does not respond well to high humidity levels, and as heat affects the standing or excess water in the area, it causes the drywall to peel away from the wall. Some may also find that the drywall looks cracked or that it crumbles when they touch it, and others find that the paint on top of the drywall bubbles and peels away. A dark and musty smell in a home, wet patches found inside the home and dark brown stains and patches on the walls or ceilings can also indicate a leak that requires a professional repair.

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