What Causes a Leaking Roof?

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A leaking roof often becomes noticeable when the ceiling has a notable watermark in the plasterboard. Or the cornice is warped due to the moisture.

Heavy rain, hail, storms and wet weather events like cyclones can put your roof to the test.

It can be difficult to identify where the leak is coming from and often requires a bit of investigation work by an experienced roof plumber.

There are a number of causes for a leaking roof. But here are some common ones and solutions for each.

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Common causes for a leaking roof:

Blocked gutters

Gutters full of leaf matter and debris can not only block your downpipes, it can force the water to overflow back into the roof through the eaves. This type of water damage can be avoided through regular maintenance, and ensuring adequate storm water drainage is in place to remove rainwater away from the roof.

Blocked down pipes or storm water pipes

If the gutters are clear, but the down pipes or storm water pipes are blocked, the water will backflow through the gutters and overflow into the roof space. Always ensure down pipes and storm water pipes are free flowing. You can use a garden hose to test them to see if water comes back up through to the gutters.

Broken or missing tiles

Often hail or a falling tree branch can break roof tiles. Gail force winds can whip old tiles, which can allow water through the roof. If you have a tiled roof and suspect a leak, you will need a specialised roof plumber who has experience with tiled roofs.

Rusted ridge capping

Ridge capping is where the roof edges meet at an angle. If the ridge capping is rusted out, it will let water into your roof cavity. There is no quick fix for this as it will need to be replaced.

Rusted or blocked gulley

Roof valleys are the ‘V’ shaped metal channels that running through the folds of the roof. Valleys will catch leaf debris and much like gutters, if this debris is not removed, rainwater will find its way into your ceiling.

Rusted roof

This is a given that a rusted roof will allow water through rusty holes. The only solution is to get the roof replaced.

Faulty flashings

Flashings will be used around the edges of the roof or around penetrations like vents and skylights. If the flashing hasn’t been well made or moulded around the penetration, water will find its way into your roof.

Incorrectly installed roof sheets or roof flashings

Incorrectly installed roof sheets and roof flashings can result in roof leaks. Although you may not be aware of a leak until a big storm, persistent rain or strong winds and rain from a certain direction allow water into the roof, causing water damage to the ceiling.  In this case, replacement of the roof and flashings will be needed and silicone is only a temporary fix.

Salmon Plumbing has experience with metal roofs, including Colourbond. If you have leaking metal roof which needs inspecting and replacing, give the team a call on 3862 2600.

How to Identify Non-Compliant Plumbing Work in a Property You Wish To Buy

Non compliant plumbing

Spring is often a popular time to purchase a new property or relocate to a new area. If you’re actively searching for properties to buy, you will want to know how to identify non-compliant plumbing work in the property.

It’s becoming more common place for a pre-purchase house inspection to include a plumbing and electrical inspection too. Before, it was recommended for a building inspection and termite inspection before the sale became unconditional.

Unfortunately, the rise of DIY renovators have uncovered some nightmare renovations which should have been conducted by a licensed tradesperson. New home owners can be unbeknown to the potential costs associated with fixing non-compliant plumbing work. It can be in the tens of thousands to rectify.

To avoid the unexpected cash outlay to fix what should have been installed right the first time, pre-purchase plumbing and electrical inspections can offer peace of mind before the sale of the home becomes unconditional. So how do you identify non-compliant plumbing work in a property you wish to buy?

Follow your nose

It’s highly likely the vendor will have the house smelling like roses to draw you in and make an offer. But smells to follow your nose with can lead you to the wet room areas. Un-trapped fixtures will give off a sewer smell. Look inside cupboard doors to check for the s and p traps for the basin and sink wastes. Check for moisture and mould on walls for unsuspected leaks. Mould can give off an unpleasant scent.

Look for unusual pipe installations and back fall

If you see a waste pipe with backfall, or double up connections with A LOT of excess glue, this is an indication of unlicensed plumbing work.

When the pipe is reduced to a smaller diameter pipe in the ground, this is another example of non-compliant plumbing.

These installations can be fixed, however if there are a few areas where the plumbing needs to be demolished and updated, that’s an expense you shouldn’t have to pay. It also prompts a wariness of what else was done unlicensed in the property?

Silicone everywhere

Silicone is needed in the right applications, but when it is smeared in the bathroom like a toddler with toothpaste, you know there is a hidden plumbing problem the owner was trying to fix or conceal. An infrared termite inspection will be able to spot moisture in the area if you are concerned.

Flexible hose connections everywhere

Flexible hoses have their place for connecting taps and toilet cisterns. The issue is when they are connected together like ropes for a water connection. If you see flex hoses connected together for water or gas lines – run.

If it doesn’t look right, it’s probably not

If you find something unusual in the way of plumbing in the property, your suspicions may be right, and it may in fact be illegal. The only way you can be sure is to organise a pre-purchase plumbing inspection.

Salmon Plumbing can check all areas of the property and even put a camera down the drains to ensure there are no hidden surprises down the line which could cost you thousands of dollars to fix. If you’ve already purchased the property and have found unusual smells, siphonage or blockages, contact the team so we can investigate the issues for you.