Tips & Advice from the Auckland Roofing Experts

How to tell if your home is at risk from a leaking roof


It’s all too easy to forget roof maintenance, until of course, water starts leaking into your home. Then again, water can leak into your home for months, or even years without you knowing it. By then of course, it’s too late and serious damage may have been done to the very fabric of your home.

You might not even discover the damage until you come to sell your home and a surveyor points out the damage. A small leak could well cost you $ thousands, simply because you failed to take appropriate action.

Even a small hole can let in a staggering amount of water. If you’ve ever had a leaking roof, you’ll also know that wind direction and the type of rain we experience can make the difference between a rush for buckets and towels, to no leaks at all. Anyone who’s experienced a serious leak will have had the damage repaired immediately and will fully appreciate the value of a sound roof.

As you might expect, at Cowperthwaite Roofing we are very enthusiastic about roof maintenance. We also believe repairs should be left to the experts. Roofs are dangerous and specialized equipment is required to ensure safety. If you can safely examine your roof, look for the following danger signs.

Condition of roof/ Damage

How clean is the roof, and is there rubbish/dirt on the roof? (This is important because unwashed areas are prone to rapid deterioration).

Are there dents in the sheet or other damage? (Dents in the metal compromises the structural integrity of the roof).

Visible rust on metal roof sheets and flashings

Can you observe the following:

Paint bubbling – a sure sign that moisture has penetrated the coating.
Visible holes in metal (even tiny holes can lead to serious damage).
Usually rust damage is worst in the areas you cannot easily see it, such as under sheets or flashings

Fixings both in roof sheets and flashings

Lead head nails (heads fallen away)
Nails lifting or missing (This inevitably leads to sheets becoming vulnerable to the weather).

Penetrations through roof

Is the penetrations allowing water to build up behind the sheeting? (Ponding water can significantly speed up the deterioration of the metal).
Sealant is old and breaking down. (Many DIY repairs use sealant or caulking to make repairs to roofs, but these repairs rarely last very long.

Incompatible materials

Lead flashing on Colorsteel roof – the chemical reaction weakens the metal.
Copper on Colorsteel roof – the chemical reaction weakens the metal.

Pitch of roof

Wrong profile use for low pitch roofs – allows water to creep under the sheet.

Gutter/downpipe

Check gutters, rainwater head, sumps for sign of deterioration
Clean out gutters make sure down pipes are not blocked
Is there an over flow installed on internal gutters?

Moss/Leaves

Most of the time you will be able to spot moss and leaves on your roof.
Not only does this look unsightly, but leaves and moss trap moisture which can cause serious corrosion.

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