Hidden Damage Caused by a Leaky Roof

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Drive down any commercial street and you’ll see a roofing service. More than 160,000 people are roofers. That doesn’t count renovators who specialize in roofs and ceilings. 

There are many roofers for good reason. Commercial roofing undergoes a lot of strain. They eventually wear down, and professionals have to fix them. 

The dangers of a leaky roof are substantial. One leak can compromise an entire building, in more ways than one. You need to be prepared for those various ways. 

Here are four hidden damages that a leaky roof causes. 

Mold and Mildew

Mold and mildew are the most serious problems that a leaky roof can cause. Yet they are also the most hidden problems. 

A few drops of water can leak into your walls. Mold can then grow inside them without you noticing. You may notice the leaks in your roof, but not the mold that has grown. 

By the time you smell it, mold has infested the interior structures of your building. It can eat away at wooden studs and floorboards, threatening the structural stability. 

Mold can also cause a number of health effects. In adults, it can cause anything from coughs to asthma attacks. It can lead to children developing asthma and respiratory allergies, which can lead to their deaths. 

Black mold is the most threatening kind of mold. It can cause mycotoxicosis, which can lead to memory loss and nosebleeds. 

Mildew is less dangerous, but it can still pose a danger. Like mold, it can eat away at the internal structures in your building. It can also cause respiratory symptoms, including coughing and sneezing.

Mildew gathers on windowsills and around sinks. You may think that faucet condensation causes it, but it may actually come from your leaking roof. 

If your building has a lot of mold and/or mildew, get a roofing inspection right away. An inspector will be able to notice how water is getting into your building. They can plug the hole, then begin working on removing the mold and mildew.

Contaminated Drinking Water 

Leaking roofs do not always contaminate the water supply, but they can pose serious threats. Water can drip down into your pipes, especially if you have very old piping. Pieces of your roof could also fall on your pipes, causing them to break. 

Roofs contain many substances, including fiberglass and metals. Droplets of water can carry small pieces of these substances into your supply. Ingesting fiberglass can cause an asthma attack or irritate the intestines. 

Roofs can also infect the water you use to wash and clean. E. coli grows in water up to 113 degrees Fahrenheit, which is hotter than the water most people wash their hands with. Touching water with bacteria to your skin can cause a serious infection. 

Do not use the water in your building if you notice your roof is leaking. If you absolutely must, boil it to kill any bacteria. Drink bottled water and call a roof restoration service as soon as possible. 

Walk through your building and look to see if any pipes have burst. Pipes may have burst in your walls, so listen for any sounds of leaking. 

Fires

Many people think that water puts out fires. But it can also cause them. 

If a roof leak occurs near an area with electric wiring, it can cause a short circuit. This often happens with light fixtures and ceiling appliances. The fixtures may burn out, or they may spark a fire. 

If a light fixture catches fire, call 911 and evacuate your building. Once the fire has been put out, consider if roof damage may have caused it. 

Check the room where the fire started. A telltale sign of a leaking roof is water stains on the ceiling. Swelling paint and patches of mold are two more signs. 

Talk to a fire inspector about the wiring in your building. Fire inspectors are trained to investigate the causes of fires, even small ones. If they believe a short circuit is responsible, ask them if your roof may have caused a leak. 

Utility Bills

Roofs are essential for safety and comfort. Heat rises, penetrating through all floors toward your roof. 

If your roof is leaking, heat will have an easier time escaping your building. This will increase the amount of heat you need to remain comfortable, driving up your utility bills. 

A sudden increase in your utility bills is not enough to suspect a leaking roof. Insulate your lower floors. Check to see that your HVAC system is working properly. 

Then head up to your roof. Feel around the ceiling and walls. If you notice cold spots, you have a leak. 

Get your roof fixed, then take measures to insulate the roof. Place loose-fill and batt insulation in between the studs in your wall. Install radiant barriers that reflect rising heat down into your building. 

If your roof leaks once, your roof is likely to leak again. Pick insulation that won’t grow mold. Aluminum does not support mold, so use it for radiant surfaces. 

Fix Your Leaky Roof Now

A leaky roof does not just mean filling a few gaps. It poses a number of hidden dangers. 

Mold and mildew can slip deep into the commercial building space. It can damage building studs and spread disease. Water can run off roofing into pipes, contaminating the water supply. 

Leaks can enter into wiring, sparking fires and destroying appliances. Utility bills can skyrocket from heating leaking out. 

The solution to these problems is to call a roofing service. Williams Roofing is Springfield, Illinois’s leading service. Contact us today.