Winter roof leaks are often attributed to fluctuating temperatures, rain, as well as the formation of ice dams. These leaks are most likely to happen during spring thaw or on mild winter days. Since the reasons for the leak can vary, how to fix a roof leak in winter will also largely depend on the type of leak along with its causing factor. For instance, repairing a roof leak around a vent will be different from addressing a roof leak around a chimney.
Reasons for Roof Leaks in Winter
Roof leaks that happen due to rain can be caused by incorrect fitting of shingles, flawed or run down shingles or even unprofessional flashing specifics at dormers and chimneys. On the other hand, ice dams will typically form at the edge of the roof along with in the valleys. With the melting snow, the water running down the roof refreezes at the overhangs and creates an ice buildup.
During periods of freezing and thawing, water becomes trapped above the ice and makes its way beneath the shingles causing a leak inside the home.
How to Fix a Roof Leak in Winter
Emergency Roof Covering
Putting a tarp on a leaky roof in the middle of winter is perhaps the most common ways of stalling excess moisture from entering the property. This is a quick fix for roof leaks in the rain. However, placing the tarp is only a band aid solution and is at best a temporary one. The root problem of the leak will still needed to be identified once the weather improves.
If you are not completely sure of where the roof leak is, then shovel any snow off, tarp the roof and wait for better weather.
Prevent Ice Dam Formation
Ice dams are formed when snow on the roof melts due to the warm, moist air moving into the attic because of an inadequate vapor barrier. For roofs that are prone to ice dam formation, the best course of action is to avoid or at least reduce ice dam formation by adjusting humidity levels and the quantity of warm air that leaves the house. Improving the vapor barrier and securing attic air leaks is an effective way to counter this issue.
Another tip to counter this problem is to have snow cleared from the roof with the assistance of a snow removal professional.
Improve Attic Insulation
A roof leak from inside an attic can result from the formation of frost caused by warm, moist air drifting into the cold attic area. Heat from everyday chores like cooking, bathing, and laundry all add to this moisture content, causing the warm moist air to rise and enter the attic. As a result, this heat loss causes frost buildup.
Once the frost starts to melt, leaks occur causing damage to the interior of the structure. In this scenario, it becomes important to lessen the amount of air escaping into the attic as well as minimize humidity levels indoors.
Hire A Professional
Removing snow and ice dams from the roof is dangerous work and should ideally be carried out with the expertise of a professional contractor. Professional roofers work in the winter and in emergency situations offering solutions that can hold until better weather conditions prevail.
To professionally fix water damage to your property, get in touch with experts like Tidal Wave Response in Atlanta who have the expertise, manpower and equipment to deal with these issues in bad weather conditions. At Tidal Wave Response, our team will take care of all water damage maintenance and repair needs for your property.