We’ve all seen those shows and movies where a group of people hides out in a run-down apartment and puts buckets all around the room to catch the water dripping through the leaky roof. Now take that picture and file away under “avoid in real life at all costs”. You know that we’re all procrastinators, but this is definitely one of the things you shouldn’t put off under any circumstances. Your roof’s already meant to only last 20 to 30 years so let’s not further shorten that life expectancy, shall we?

That small little leak may not look all that intimidating but it will damage your house from top to bottom if you fail to get it repaired in time. And if you still don’t believe it, here is a list of things that leakage can destroy:

1. The Structure of The Building

Say goodbye to your rafter, your wall framing, joists and fascia boards, because the water coming through the roof will soak into the floor of your attic and rot the wood. And if it doesn’t take that route, it will weasel its way under the roof and run alongside the framing of your house where it will rot the wood, bow the walls, cause your entire roof to sag and saturate the foundation of the entire building. This process may take years and can be easily overlooked so be sure to fix the leak early. Because by the time you notice the extensive damage done to your house through neglect, it may already be extremely costly to repair.

2. The Attic And Ceiling

Once water has penetrated the roof, you’ll either have to deal with water-damaged and moldy boxes in the attic or direct damage to the interior of your home. The first signs of water-damage done to a room will be dark patches of paint along the ceiling, or maybe even a broken ceiling light or -fan. This can turn into wavy wallpaper or bubbling plaster, and eventually the spreading onto neighboring walls.

3. Your Bank Account

The leak in your roof will damage the insulation to the point where regulating your home’s temperature will become more and more difficult. Over time, this will cause your electricity bill to increase exponentially.

4. Your Health

Do you have a heating or air conditioning system? Well, if you do have either on top of a leaky roof, you may now have mold and mildew growth all over your home. In most cases, you will find black mold along the walls and ceiling, maybe even in tile joints or the framing. Getting rid of it is difficult as well as costly but also a requirement if you wish to stay healthy. The continuously spreading spores will lead to serious health concerns even with an otherwise healthy person, and if you already have breathing problems due to a chronic disease like asthma, you may want to clear out your home until the mold has been taken care of.

5. Your Life

Never blow dry your hair while you’re sitting in the bath tub and never leave a leaky roof unfixed because water and electricity do not play nice with each other. If water does manage to get through your roof and come in contact with an open circuit, it will cause a fire. And even if you do have insulation meant to prevent such events, the water may still get into a junction box and find that wiring. If that happens, an unknowing person could come into contact with the box and be hit with a high-voltage shock that could cause tissue damage, fibrillation or cardiac arrest – all of which can be fatal. To avoid all this, you can switch of the power until a repairman has had time to thoroughly examine the area.

And as if that wasn’t already bad enough…

• Leaks can cause puddles which are a well-known slipping-hazard.
• Water can soak into your drywall and make them unstable to the point of collapse.
• You roof deck can degrade and become a mine-field of injuries for anyone who tries to repair it.

So what can you do to avoid all this? Easy! Hire a roof repairs expert in Palo Alto to come in and check your roof every year. It may seem like a waste of money but it will actually save you more once that leak gets caught before it can cause serious damage.