As we make our way through an unpredictable winter season many properties are at risk of a leaky roof. Melting snow and changing temperatures make loose shingles, worn sealant, and other cracks susceptible to leaks, a potential problem, causing issues on the roof or other areas of your property. As seasons change, frozen ice and snow will expand and melt, resulting in damaging water and often causes gaps, cracks and spaces to form where they did not exist before. Here are the main causes of winter roof leaks….

Ice dams

By far, one of the most common causes of winter roof leaks, is an ice dam. The term refers to a solid block of ice that has obstructed your roof and therefore prevented water from running off of it – just as a dam stops water in nature. Dams may have formed on your property roof because of snow that initially melted and then froze again. The result is a hard dam that causes water to gather and sit, eventually wearing through the roof and causing a leak.

Cracked flashings

Cracked flashings are another main cause of winter roof leaks. Cracked flashing under the shingles and on the joints of the roof can allow quite a bit of water into the loft during a storm. This generally takes place when the flashing is exposed to the elements after the coating has cracked or fallen off. Luckily, this type of damage is extremely easy to remedy, and a single piece of cracked flashing can often be replaced in as little as an hour or two. Once the flashing is back in place, a thick layer of sealant should be used to cover it completely.

Clogged gutters

The purpose of your rain gutters is to move water away from your property, but if yours are clogged with leaves, dirt or other debris, they need to be cleared out immediately to prevent further complications. When water is allowed to stay in them for too long, it can lead to rust and this can damage your roof and lead to costly, hazardous leaks. Clogged gutters also encourage water to sit on top of your roof for too long. In response, the structure will eventually give way, causing water to drip from your ceiling.

Lack of Insulation

Snow begins to melt due to the heat escaping through the loft from a lack of insulation. This causes moisture to build up in the loft space when the heat and cold mix. The moisture is usually evident if you look at the nails. Nails will typically show water gathering on the tip and many times this drips down and although it’s not a roof leak, it may feel like it is when you see a stain on your ceiling.

Missing Tiles

Missing tiles from your roof is one of the primary reasons that it will leak any time of year. However, the high-speed winter winds do have the potential to knock tiles loose from your roof. Unless you see loose tiles on the floor outside, it’s quite hard to know they’re missing without a professional inspection.

At All Seasons Industrial Roofing we are specialists in all types of roofing installations, refurbishments and repairs to industrial and commercial properties. We carry out repairs, refurbishments and complete new roof installations to a wide range of buildings, throughout the whole of London and its surrounding areas whilst our other office in Gloucestershire handles work throughout the Midlands including Birmingham, the Black Country, Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire.

For further information on the main causes of winter roof leaks please contact us here:

London Office
Midlands Office