Whether you are home when the leak starts or come home to it, it is important that you take immediate action to avoid further damage to your home.

Things to Look for When You Have a Leak Through the Ceiling

No one ever wants to find water leaking from their ceiling. Whether you are home when the leak starts or come home to it, it is important that you take immediate action to avoid further damage to your home. Here are things to look for and what you can do if you have a leak through your ceiling.

Observation is Key

Observation is the biggest thing you can do to help your plumber find the leak. You may have a huge, major water leak which can be easily spotted. If the water leak in your ceiling is large you will find water leaking through the ceiling onto the floor or even a visible hole where water can come through. But spotting the source of ceiling water damage can sometimes be difficult. For a small ceiling water leak, you may notice slight discoloring spots, mildew, sagging ceiling, drips, or slightly bulging drywall.

Once you identify the spot on your ceiling with water damage you should immediately take steps to repair it. There are two main reasons why it is so important for you to repair this ASAP. Firstly, if water leaked there once, it is likely to leak again or even leak continually. If not fixed, it will cause much more damage in the future. And secondly, even if water doesn’t leak in that spot of your ceiling again, it may still cause mold and mildew. If left unattended, mold can cause harm to your family.

Identify the Source of the Leak

Before you can repair water damaged ceilings, you need to find the source of the water. This is key as any repairs on the ceiling drywall itself will be pointless if the water comes back again. Here are some of our tips to identify ceiling leak sources.

  • If it leaks all the time regardless of whether anyone is using anything in the floor above the vast majority of the time it is a water line piping leak
  • If the water seems to come through the ceiling when someone flushes the toilet or use a sink or bathtub, that normally indicates a drain line
  • If it leaks through the ceiling when it rains, that indicates a possible roof flashing leak.

Common Causes of Ceiling Water Damage

  • Leaky Roof: A leaky roof can be caused by heavy wind storms moving and blowing shingles off the roof. Shingles may also be too old to keep water away or any number of issues.
  • Clogged Gutters: If water can’t properly drain away from your home, it will likely drain into your home. Clogged gutters can change the flow of water with enough force to enter your home.
  • Leaky Pipes: These are caused by pipes being too old or not properly secured or installed. It can also be caused by DIY renovations with a nail slightly puncturing a pipe. Leaky pipes are often the most dangerous water leak as even the tiniest pinhole can flood your ceiling with gallons of water a day.
  • Bathroom Waterproofing: If your bathroom isn’t properly waterproofed with the proper caulk or sealant this can be a major cause of ceiling water damage to the floors below.
  • Leaking Appliances: Includes any appliance using water like a fridge, dishwasher, washing machine, etc. Appliances often leak after many years of regular use.

Do Your Best to Stop the Water

If you have been able to identify the water leak, do your best to stop the flow of water. The type of water leak will dictate the way you should stop the water.

  • Leaky Plumbing Pipes: If the water leak in the ceiling comes from a plumbing pipe, you can shut off the main water line to stop the flow of water.
  • Appliance or Bathroom Leaks: Avoid using that bathroom or appliance until you can repair the source of the leak.
  • Roof or Gutter Leaks: Stopping a leaky roof or gutter is more difficult, as weather likely dictates the flow of water. Your only option is to repair the leak.

Call Proudfoot for Help

And if you can’t find the source or can’t stop the flow of water, you can call on Proudfoot Plumbing, Heating, and Air. We’ll come out and we’ll have the repair or replacement done quickly and with as little intrusion into your daily life as humanly possible!  That’s why we think you should choose us.  Call us at 1-412-461-2198.  We hope to see you soon; that is, only if you have an annoying leak!


Image Credit: Ron Hazelton

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