You’ve got a small leak in the roof. You don’t want to spend the money to fix a seemingly minor problem. Unfortunately, when you put off a roof leak repair, you are taking a chance. Here are seven risks you face when you put off making needed roof repairs.
Growth of Mold and Mildew
Mold and mildew likes to grow in the dark, moist corners of your home. Some types of mold can cause health problems. Their spores spread through the air and people breathe them in. This can cause asthma attacks or allergic reactions. In rare cases, especially with toxic black mold, the spores can cause severe illness. Even non-harmful mold can damage the surface of your ceiling, walls, and floors, while also making them look unsightly.
It doesn’t take a lot of water to soak wood or drywall. If a small roof leak gets started, you could have a mold and mildew problem within a matter of days.
Electrical Damage and Hazard
Water travels downhill. Electricity and water don’t mix. These are plain facts.
Due to its very nature, water is going to travel to the lowest point possible. It starts dripping from the roof and pooling on the attic floor. If the floor has an opening or a slant, the water is going to keep moving. This often means traveling through the walls towards the ground.
If it reaches any part of your electrical system during its journey, you could have serious electrical issues, like the following:
- Electrical fire if the water causes a short circuit
- Shock hazard if someone touches water that also touches an electrical source
- Damaged appliances caused by short circuits
Even if the water doesn’t reach the flow of electricity, it can still cause damage to the wiring, outlets, and circuit panel. That can end up costing you hundreds or thousands to repair or replace.
Reduced Insulation Efficiency
Dripping water from a roof leak can quickly soak the insulation in your attic and exterior walls. Almost all types of batt or blown-in insulation, usually made from fiberglass or cellulose, will compress and clump when soaked with water. This causes the insulation to lose almost all of its insulating ability.
Reduced insulation efficiency means the heat and cold outside can get inside your home, making it harder to keep it comfortable inside.
Further Damage to Your Roof
That small leak can be the start of a major roof repair or even a complete roof replacement. The water coming in soaks the wood around the leak point. The wood starts to deteriorate. This can cause the shingles above the soaked wood to pull away, leaving room for more water to get inside. The additional water causes even more damage.
As the damage spreads, the problems get worse. The rotting wood can cause flashing to pull away from vents and chimneys, causing even more leaks. Every time the damage spreads, the repair costs go up.
Slip and Fall Conditions
The water coming in through your roof will eventually land on your floor. Standing water, especially on hard floors, can become a slip and fall hazard. Children, the elderly, and disabled members of your household could easily slip and fall due to the puddle. Even the dog or cat could end up injured due to the hazardous conditions.
No Insurance Coverage for Damage
Insurance companies can tell when a homeowner’s neglect in making repairs causes structural damage. An adjuster can tell if a leak is brand new or if it has been around for a while. Insurers will not cover damage caused by procrastination. The insurance company will deny the claim and may even drop the policy. If they keep you on as a client, you can expect to pay a lot more in premiums.
Higher Energy Costs
When your home’s insulation gets soaked, your HVAC system will have to work harder to keep the inside of your home comfortable. That translates into higher energy costs year-round. You will also have higher costs in maintenance and repairs to your HVAC system. It works harder, it breaks down more often.
Compromised Structural Integrity
If you neglect a roof repair long enough, the structural integrity of your home could be compromised. Water can cause wood to rot. That means the rafters in your roof, the floor joists in your attic, and the walls in your home could deteriorate over time. Water can also compromise concrete, causing it to chip or corrode. That means your home’s foundation or pillars could start to fall apart.
Making roof repairs is not something that you can wait too long to do without serious consequences. If you need a roof leak repair, contact Crossover Roofing today for a free roof inspection. We are a full-service roofing company equipped to handle roof repair and replacement.
Mary Jane Hedrick is the owner of Crossover Roofing, LLC and believes that her customers are entitled to receive exceptional service and superior craftsmanship from the leading roofing, siding, and windows company in the Triad.