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O'Fallon Roofing: Article About Detecting Roof Leakage

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Moisture problems can be the downfall of any roofing system, including those built with premium materials such as copper panels and slate tiles. New as well as older houses can have problems with water intrusion, which is why it is important to have experienced O'Fallon roofing contractors inspect the house annually. Detecting and repairing moisture problems while they are still small can help to prevent major leaks and costly repairs in the future.

There are three different types of moisture that impact roofs. Solid moisture includes the intrusion of ice or snow underneath shingles, such as in the case of ice dams. Liquid intrusion involves leaking water. Vapors or gases are the other type of moisture to affect roofs. Moisture affects different roofing covers in different ways. Warm and humid air results in the expansion of materials such as metal and wood. When the humidity levels drop, the materials contract. As this cycle repeats itself, the fasteners can work loose and gaps may develop in seams. This allows moisture to penetrate into the roof's wooden purlins, battens, joists, trusses and decking.

One technique that roofers use to examine a structure for moisture problems is scanning for corrosion.

A roofing contractor from ACI Exteriors of O'Fallon MO would be happy to answer any questions you have about siding or new roofs.

Metals corrode in the presence of moisture, especially if the water has a salt or acid content that causes a chemical reaction with the metal ions. A roof's flashing, gutters, downspouts and vent covers are prone to corrosion. Fastener heads can also show signs of rust.

Leak detection is also an important part of discovering moisture problems. Interior signs of a leak include bubbling or peeling paint, reddish to brown stains on plaster and drywall, black streaks and dots of mold. A mildew smell may also develop. Within the attic, wood may split, flake or become soft and warped. These issues can also develop without a leak if there is inadequate attic ventilation. Condensation overnight for several months in a row can be enough to cause structural problems for a roof.

Roofers will also check for the presence of a thermal gradient. This can develop in the attic space of a home. If a home's attic is not accessible, the contractors can use infrared cameras to detect the movement of heat and moisture. Pressure gradients are also important in the detection of moisture problems. A buildup of high pressure may occur due to the actions of a structure's heating and air conditioning system, water heaters and household activities. All of these problems can be corrected with proper ventilation, including passive and mechanical vents and fans.

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