Top 5 Questions About Roof Leaks In Marin

What Is The Most Common Cause Of Roof Leaks?

There are a number of causes for roof leaks. Since Marin and Sonoma counties experience mini climates, depending on your area’s geography, weather may be a factor. Since composition asphalt shingles are the most common type of roof covering, we’ll focus on shingles.

Along the coastline, strong winds, salt air and moisture can all take their toll on your roof shingles. In the wooded areas, debris from trees and moisture from lack of sun can cause deterioration of the roofing material that sits beneath the damp debris. Inland areas that experience long periods of intense sun and heat can also cause shingles to age more rapidly so they crack or curl.

Neglect and lack of maintenance is a very common cause of roof leaks, so prevention is your best option. Keeping your roof free of debris and quickly replacing missing or damaged shingles can save you headaches in the long run.

Clay or composition roofing tiles, slate and metal roofing materials are meant to last decades and even longer with minimal repairs or even maintenance. The larger initial outlay for materials, along with some modifications that often prove necessary to hold the extra weight, deter the average homeowner from making this kind of initial investment.

Another cause could be cracked or missing caulking around flashing, or damaged flashing.

What To Do If My Roof Is Leaking?

Stopping a roof leak will depend on what is causing the leak. Finding the cause is the first step. Keep in mind, too, that finding where the leak originated is not always easy. Where the roof is leaking on the inside or your home is not always where the leak originated. Water can slide down from a peak, or around flashing for pipes, but only show up when it hits the place where the roof meets a wall and drip from there.

You can try to find the origin of the leak by going into your attic or looking up into the crawl space to observe the underside of your roof and tracing any moisture or leaks from there.

How Do I Stop My Roof Leaking In Heavy Rain?

From the outside, you can look at the surface of your roof but it is often safer to call in a professional roofer who is more comfortable on a ladder in the rain. If a pile of debris is causing rain to pool in one area, then removing the debris and tarping over the area is best. If the damage to your roofing materials themselves is apparent, then tarping that area until the damaged shingles can be replaced will be very important.

Why Is My Brand New Roof Leaking?

If you just had your roof replaced, you may be wondering how a leak can appear with the first rain. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, flashing is one of the first places to examine. Darren Little, of Booth and Little explains it this way, “If the new flashing around a chimney or pipes on your roof is not sealed properly around the metal flashing, water can leak in and damage ceilings and walls.”

He added, “Always go back to the person who installed it. If you use someone else, it can void your warranty agreement. The roofer will have 24 hours to respond. If they don’t reply within that time period, you can use someone else. But you’ll want documentation on the timing.” 

Are Roofers Responsible For Leaks?

Professional, licensed roofers are responsible for workmanship leaks for up to four years in the State of California, with a written contract. But as Darren warns, if someone else does interim repairs, or does any kind of roof installation, like solar panels, you may want your roofer in on the project, to ensure the roofing materials are not damaged in the process. As added protection, make sure you hire a reputable, licensed roofing contractor with a solid reputation. A roof is a big investment, so choose wisely.


If you have questions or want to schedule an appointment with a Booth and Little professional, give us a call now. One of our roofing specialists is standing by in our Marin office ready to take your call at 415-924-2733.