All leak investigations begin with a visual inspection. In some cases, if viewed while actively filtering, the source can be identified and no more. Any of these signs can point to a possible leak somewhere on your roof. Unfortunately, the first place you notice it may not tell you where the leak is.
For that, you have to do a little more research. A roofing service technician is dispatched who will ask you to view the area of the leak inside. Leaks in your roofing system can create many health and safety hazards and cause significant damage. Continuous water leaks can also distort the structure of your home and promote mold growth.
For many years, the most common method of roof leak testing has been flood testing. The cost of replacing a roof membrane is about one-tenth the price of replacing the entire roof, so homeowners see it as a cost-effective precaution. In addition, a new roof can be tested before installing the ballast and other components “above the membrane”. Roof leaks can be a combination of two or three different areas where water penetrates through the house.
If the proper installation of the flashing is replaced with a thick layer of putty, you may not immediately leak, but over time, the putty will crack and become less effective. Wooden dams or curbs can be applied to prevent water from flowing down the sides of the building or to test the roof in sections. As they investigate a weakness and test it, they may find other leaks and defects that haven't appeared inside the building but are causing damage to the roof structure. If the problem goes beyond a simple DIY solution or involves significant structural damage to your roof, call a professional as soon as possible.
However, because even “flat roofs” have a certain slope, the weight of water needed is usually twice as heavy. If the bottom of the deck is open, the roofing technician will note the direction in which the grooves run and if there is any penetration into the area. If you need to replace your roof, an easy-to-dispose solution for all those shingles is to rent a dumpster. There have even been times when the leak could have been a plumbing problem and not a roofing, cladding, or flashing problem.
If you're managing a building with an inverted roof, beware of contractors who tell you that a free visual inspection will produce a realistic budget. In a dark roofing membrane, these areas appear lighter because they accumulate dust and debris carried away from the other areas. At least one company markets a conductive glass felt that can be embedded under or between layers of the roof membrane as it is installed. Infrared scanning allows technicians to sample the entire roof, rather than possibly just 2 percent of the roof area when using a 10 square foot grid pattern required for individual testing when using other methods.
This means that during the leak investigation, we will describe potential contributors to the leak and start with the simplest and most obvious one in the hope that we can create a solution that is more affordable for you.