Top 8 Surprising Reason of Roof Leak

A roof leak is the last thing anyone wants, whether their property is large or small. When it rains, no one wants to have to go looking for a drip bucket. Not only is it annoying and impracticable to keep up with the weather prediction, but even one small drip represents a greater roofing issue and we all know that roofing problems require time and money. You never know when it will mean the difference between a minor repair and a huge renovation.

EcoShield Roofing wants you to understand what’s causing your leak. We’ll go over the most typical roof leaks we find and how they’re repaired since we want you to be as knowledgeable as possible about something as distressing as a leaking roof.

Water stains on the ceiling may be visible, or water dripping through the ceiling may be more noticeable and you are concerned that your roof is leaking. You must first determine what is causing the leak before you can stop it and fix the damage inside. Finding the source of the water leak is important to fixing it and avoiding future problems. Leaks are most commonly caused by roof damage, which can take many different forms.

The discovery of the dreaded brown spot on your ceiling is highly alarming. After a while, the water smashes through your ceiling, and you have to scramble to find buckets or pots to catch it. You have no idea how much damage the leak is causing to your home. You can even come across mold that is dangerous to you and your family.

Let’s take a look at the 8 most frequent reason of roof leak, where they appear, and how to fix them.

roof leak

[This photo is from one of our customers who have suffered from a long term roof leak]


  • Holes


Water can easily enter your home through a hole in the roof. Nothing can stop the water from flooding your property.  If you neglect your roof, holes might form over time. They can also occur unexpectedly if anything comes into contact with your roof.


Removing things from your roof is another potential source of holes. Taking down an old antenna or satellite dish may leave holes in the roof where the objects were secured.  If anything is removed from your roof, make sure the holes are properly sealed.


  • Your Flashing Has Cracked


Flashing is a type of metal that covers joints and seams to prevent leakage. However, it can also be a source of roof leak. Water can enter if the flashing is not placed correctly. If the flashing is not properly fastened, it may shift out of place. It is also susceptible to deterioration over time. The metal could corrode, crack, or be somehow damaged, allowing water to enter. They will seem as long runs of sheet metal if exposed, and will have a rubberized coating if concealed. Large cracks will appear in broken flashing.


Roofers frequently use tar to join the flashing, which can deteriorate over time. If your flashing is left exposed, elements such as wind and rain may cause it to shatter.


Pry up the nails used to secure the old flashing once you’ve found the source of the roof leak. Remove any shingles that are in the way and the cracked portion. Place a fresh run of flashing in its place and secure it with roofing nails in the same pattern as the old piece. Then, on the nail heads, apply a coat of roofing sealant. Check the flashing around your chimney and vents on a regular basis to make sure there are no cracks allowing moisture in.


  • Pipe Boot Failure


Roof Leak


A boot around a pipe failing is the most common cause of a roof leak that we observe. A boot is a sort of roof flashing that waterproofs the pipes coming out of your roof by going around the base of them. A roofer can wear a variety of footwear, including lead, plastic, copper, and others. The basic purpose of a pipe boot, regardless of the material, is to prevent water from following the pipe down through your roof and into your home.


The pipe boots will not outlast the roof. Although the material has improved in recent years, it will still not survive your shingles. The pipe boot should endure for about ten years, but several conditions (location, weather, and animals) will determine how long it lasts.


The roof leak could appear in the master bedroom, a bathroom, or a closet, among other places. It’ll be on the roof, wherever that pipe is positioned. Looking at the general location of the leak on your roof will reveal which pipe is allowing water into your home.


Installing a small rubber collar over the top of the old cracked neoprene pipe boot is the simplest solution to fix this roof leak. The collar will enclose the existing flange (the flat rectangular flashing around the pipe’s bottom) and should last another 10-15 years.


  • Missing or Damaged Shingles


Shingles protect your roof while also assisting water runoff to the gutters. They can’t execute their job if they’re damaged in any manner, which could lead to roof leaks.¬† The damage might sometimes begin right away. Roof leaks can be caused by shingles or improperly fitted roofing. Defective roofing materials might potentially cause roof leaks from the start.


The shingles might be damaged by storms or wind. Roof shingles can be blown off by strong winds. The shingles and the roofing beneath them can be punctured by a fallen branch.  Check your roof for damage or missing shingles on a regular basis, especially after harsh weather. You can replace the damaged or missing sections if the roof is otherwise in good condition.


This one is rather obvious. Because shingles comprise the roof’s outer layer, you should be able to spot missing shingles on your roof by looking for different-colored patches. After a very bad storm, you can find the shingles themselves littering your yard. Weather is to blame yet again. High winds and heavy rainfall are expected.


Pry a row of nails connecting the damaged shingle to the one below it with a pry bar. Lift until the nail pops, then remove the nail by pressing down on the shingle. Continue with the remaining nails. Remove the shingle that is damaged, replace it with a new one, and fix it with four new nails.


  • Improperly driven nails


When a roofing nail backs out of a shingle, it is one of the most common causes of roof leaks. You shouldn’t have an issue with it if the nail strikes good wood, holds tight and snug, and isn’t overdriven, whether it’s air-nailed or hand-nailed.¬† If a nail isn’t hammered in far enough or in the wrong direction, the head of the nail will work its way back up through the shingle. Water catches the head as it comes down your roof and follows the nail inside when it rains.


If you have a protruding nail head, you’re probably going to have a roof leak. Choosing a roofing provider with a proven track record of correctly installing roofs reduces the risk of roof leaks caused by improperly driven nails.


  • Old Age


Due to wear and tear, your roof will ultimately need to be replaced. The lifespan of a roof is mostly determined by the roofing material chosen. Asphalt shingles, which are used on many homes, typically last 20 years, but they might last longer or shorter depending on the quality of the roof. Fiber cement shingles are more durable, lasting about 25 years. Wood shakes or shingles should last for about 30 years.


Slate, tile, and metal roofing last the longest before needing replacement. These materials can last for up to 50 years. The roofing can grow fragile and disintegrate as it ages. This makes it incapable of preventing roof leaks in your home.


No matter what material your roof is made of, damage or neglect can limit its lifespan. If you’re aware that your roof is getting older or that it hasn’t been properly maintained, the roof leak could be the result of natural aging.


  • Your Gutters Are Clogged


Water flows from your roof into the gutters. The gutter can also collect leaves, sticks, and other garbage. If you don’t clean your gutters on a regular basis, debris will accumulate and prevent water from flowing freely. Water can accumulate on the roof and seep under the shingles, causing roof leaks. To keep your gutters clear, clean them at least three times a year. If there are many trees in your area, you may need to clear them more frequently.


When you glance up onto your roof, you could notice leaves poking out of the gutter. If not, the lack of water dripping out of a downspout during a rainfall should be noticeable. Your gutters are designed to direct water away from your roof. That travel comes to a halt when an obstruction arises and they become clogged. Rainwater will collect in one region of the roof, giving it more chances to infiltrate through fractures.


Sorry, but there is no simple answer to this question. Climb a ladder and enter the room using your hands. Many people suggest putting a huge tarp underneath the work area. You’ll be able to drop any debris as you go and wrap it up for later disposal. For maximum water flow, clean your gutters in the spring and fall.


  • Roof Slope Issues


A flat roof or a shallow roof slope might increase the likelihood of roof leaks. The roof’s slope aids in efficient water drainage. Water can slow down or pool up on the roofing material if the roof doesn’t have much of a slope, and it may eventually seep into your home.




EcoShield Roofing specializes in roof replacements and repair for metal and shingle roofs. We are a roofing business with all the correct credentials and the required local and state licenses to get your job done right. 

We also offer roof repair and gutter installation to ensure that your roof continues to work properly for years to come. To get started on your new roof, schedule a free estimate now!


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Author: William Sessions

William Sessions started a roofing business in 2018 with a mission to create high-quality roofs for Winston-Salem and surrounding areas. He did jobs for Safeco, Liberty Mutual, All-State, and Nationwide for two years. In that experience, he learned how to properly inspect for Hail, Wind and other damages to shingles that would impact insurance claims. After that, he started his own family business and proudly served roofing service in North Carolina. He leverages his roofing knowledge and provides useful insights through blogs on