9 Causes Of Roof Leaks Every Houston TX Homeowner Needs To Know

July 15, 2022

When Leaks Are The Issue, The Pros
At HRC Have You Covered

A leaking roof on your Houston, TX, home is definitely cause for concern. When a leak is allowed to continue, it can cause hundreds upon thousands of dollars in damages to the interior of your home.

Understanding what causes roof leaks and the preliminary signs to be aware of is vital in preventing them from happening in the first place.

1. Clogged Gutters

Gutters are meant to collect the water from your Houston, TX home’s roof and then direct it through the downspouts away from your home. However, when gutters become clogged, the water is no longer being redirected away from your home and instead, the water can remain near the roof (and sometimes back onto the shingles). This can sometimes cause water to seep in between the shingles.

Gutters become clogged with pine needles, leaves, and even asphalt granules over time. Cleaning your gutters every year is recommended. It is a small task to do that can save you from a roof leak later down the line!

2. Damaged Or Missing Shingles

Damaged or missing shingles may seem like an obvious cause for roof leaks; however, you may not spend a lot of time looking at your roof. It is always wise to walk your property after a big storm. 

When shingles are damaged or missing, the underlayment beneath can start to show. It can be more subtle than this. 

Anytime a shingle is damaged or missing, rainwater can easily start to leak inside your home. In addition, water could be causing additional damage to the remaining shingles, resulting in larger leaks within your home.

3. Pipe Boot Failure

Every Houston, TX home has small pipes sticking out of the roof. These are plumbing and HVAC  vents that allow pressure and gasses to safely leave your home. Just like any roof penetration, they are sealed to prevent water intrusion. These pipe boots can fail over time as they are exposed to harsh weather conditions year-round.

Cracking is often seen in roof boot wraps allowing water to seep into your roof. In addition, if these are installed incorrectly, water can easily get to your roof.

4. Roof Valleys Become Compromised

Not every roof has a valley, which is an intersection of two angles or directions. 

Valleys see a high amount of water flow, and this can make them vulnerable over time. This is especially true if the valley was not properly prepared with ice and water protection (a layer that goes under your shingles). Flashing and ice/water protection for a roof valley is vital in preventing roof leaks.

If the flashing is old, not properly installed, or damaged, roof leaks are likely to happen at the roof valley.

5. Holes In Roof

A hole in your roof is not always visible from the ground or even from the interior of your home; that is what makes them tricky. Holes are often found when a roof inspection is performed.

When you think of a hole in your roof, you may be envisioning a crater-sized hole. However, in most cases, there are multiple smaller holes. Often these holes may be the result of small animals, misplaced roofing nails, or perhaps holes left behind when a satellite has been removed from the home. Even a single nail ‘pop’ (if a nail head becomes exposed or was incorrectly placed) can cause a leak.

6. Skylights

If you have a skylight in your home, you may love the natural light it allows into your home. However, many roof leaks start due to a skylight being improperly installed, not angled correctly, or simply from deteriorated sealant.

Luckily, when a skylight is the cause of a leaky roof, it is often very noticeable since rain is going to pour into your home around the skylight. However, while the leak may seem small at first, it is still doing damage to the surrounding roof and will need professional attention.

7. Chimney Mortar Breakdown

When you look at your brick chimney, the gray material between the bricks is your mortar. When mortar breaks down, this can allow leaks to enter in through the chimney and spread throughout the roof.

Mortar breaks down naturally over time. After all, mortar is a mixture of water, sand, and cement that sees weather every day. While there is no stopping this from happening, it is important to keep an eye on your chimney before leaks become an issue.

8. Failed Flashing

Flashing is the thin strips of metal that are installed around “danger” points of your roof where a leak is more likely to happen. 

For example, you will find flashing where the chimney meets the roof.

While flashing is meant to handle harsh weather elements, the metal can rust or crack over time resulting in leaks. Leaks can occur when the flashing is not properly sealed or it has aged out.

9. Age Of Your Roof

If your roof is very old, leaks are bound to happen. Roofing materials get old and cannot protect your home forever. Here in Houston, our extreme temperatures cause asphalt shingles to expand and contract, which puts even more stress on the roof.

Aged shingles become brittle and in most cases, cannot be repaired. When leaks start to occur due to the age of the roof, it is time for a replacement.

Free Roof Inspection With HRC

If you are worried about the possibility of leaks, already have leaks, or cannot really determine the age of your roof, then a roof inspection can put some of your worries to rest.

Here at Houston Roofing and Construction, we offer Houston, TX, homeowners a free roof inspection from qualified professionals who will determine if there is a problem while also offering a long-term solution. Contact us today or call us at 832-237-3737 to book your roof consultation.   

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