Is a Leaking Roof an Emergency?

No matter the size of the leak, a leaking roof can create a costly repair bill if left untreated. A small leak may only need a small repair to patch the leak. Large or frequent leaks may be a sign it is time for a new roof. Either way, a leaking roof can cause structural damage to the roof and can be a breeding ground for mold in your home. Here are some tips for how to determine the severity of your roof leak and how to handle it.

Identify the Source

Identifying where the water is leaking inside should be the easy part because you will most likely have a puddle of water on your floor and a ceiling that is dripping water. The first thing you should do once you see where the roof is leaking is dry up the mess with towels and place a bucket underneath until the leak is fixed. It is also advisable to move any furniture that could be affected and place drop cloths or plastic down to protect the floor. 

If you have access to the attic, you will be able to see the underside of the roof and diagnose the severity of the leak. Common causes of roof leaks are weak seals around vents and nails that managed to pierce through the roof. Small issues like these can be the cause of much larger problems, so it is important to find the root of the leak. 

Now if you have access to your roof you should be able to find the location of the leak based on the location of it in your living space. Some temporary solutions can help stop a roof leak until you have a roofer come and repair it properly.

Ways to Temporarily to Stop a Roof Leak

Tarp Covering 

This method is used to stop large leaks. If you have a tarp laying around in your garage and you have access to your roof this can help save your home from leaking rainwater. 

Start by measuring the area you will be covering and giving an additional four feet for the tarp around your hole. Use 2×4’s to easily roll out the tarp and then screw the 2×4’s into the roof to secure the tarp to the roof.

Roofing Tape

Roofing tape can be a quick way to temporarily patch a hole. This tape can be purchased at any local hardware store and installed in minutes. These tapes are made with either rubber or silicone, so they are waterproof and can handle the elements better than other tapes like duct tape.

Caulk or Cement

Roofing cement or silicone caulk can be another DIY fix for a leaking roof. Both of these can be purchased at a hardware store in addition to a caulk gun, a trowel for cement, and a putty knife. These methods do a great job of plugging any small cracks and holes in your roof. 

How to Prevent a Leaking Roof

Regular maintenance is the key to a longstanding roof. This means to keep up with cleaning gutters each season to make sure that water can flow off the roof unrestricted. Trimming close hanging trees can keep leaves away from gutters and prevent the possibility of tree limbs damaging the roof. Damaged shingles and flashing can also be signs of a leaking roof to come. 

If you are worried about the health of your current roof, it is recommended to have an expert come out to diagnose the issue and give you the best recommendation. These leak fixes listed above are only temporary solutions, but will not hold up for long periods. Having a professional roofer fix the damage the right way is the best way to prevent further headache.


At Philly’s Phinest Roofing we offer full roofing replacements and emergency repairs on both residential and commercial roofs. Contact Philly’s Phinest Roofing today for a free estimate and our team will come out and access your leaking roof to give you the best course of action to protect your home from the elements this winter.