How a Bad Roofing Job Can Lead to Major Damage

If you spend thousands of dollars on a new roof or a roof repair, you expect the problem to be taken care of. But some roofing companies might rush through a project or cut corners in order to save money or time. It’s important to know the signs of a bad roofing job so you don’t end up with issues like future roof damage or roof leaks.

I sat down with my team and thought about some of those hard conversations we’ve had with customers who had no idea how much damage a bad roofing job can do. Read on to learn about one of the worst roofing jobs we have ever seen.

A Bad Roofing Job Creates a Nightmare

When one homeowner spent $20,000 on a new roof, he expected to get what he paid for. But that was not the case – not even close. The homeowner suspected something might be wrong when he noticed what he thought might be water damage in his house. He thought, “Of course nothing is wrong, the roof was just replaced.” Instead of scheduling an inspection right away, he put it off until the problem became so obvious he couldn’t ignore it anymore.

Signs of a Bad Roofing Job

When we arrived for the inspection, the first thing we noticed was the way the shingles were misaligned. Even with the sawtooth pattern, it was clear the shingles were installed incorrectly. The previous contractor had laid full shingles and then cut tiny additional pieces which were laid on the edge. The shingles on the edge were barely attached to the roof. Any amount of wind would have blown them off the roof very quickly, leaving the underlying areas exposed and susceptible to leaking.

The second sign we noticed was the shingles were laid with about a one-inch gap between them. In other words, the shingles underneath were overexposed. We could also see keyways – spaces in between shingles. Some shingling patterns are designed to have small gaps between shingles, but a sawtooth roof should not have visible keyways.

The third sign we noticed was the ridge cap – the middle point where both sides of the roof meet. One side looked good, but the other side was a different story. From our inspection, we could tell that the previous contractors had run out of the special shingles used for the ridge cap, and they solved this problem by making their own. Yikes! That is definitely NOT the industry standard.

The other signs of a bad roofing job included a large hump in the middle of the roof, missing shingles and overall sloppy workmanship. It was very clear the previous roofing contractors took many, many shortcuts.

The final issue we noticed was maybe the most shocking of them all: The roofing job wasn’t even finished! We could see the old roof flashing and shingle sheets laying loosely on the roof. What’s more? The old flashing was coming away from the exterior of the home, leaving a gap in one area of the roof and a hole in another. These exposed areas created opportunities for roof leaks, allowing water to enter the home.

A roof leak that causes water to enter your home can lead to serious roof damage and steep repair costs. When you are paying top dollar for a new roof or roof repair job, you should receive quality service from a skilled team. You should not have to deal with roof leaks right after a new roof installation or repair.

How do I know if my roofing job is bad?

If you notice a roof leak right after having work done on your roof, you might be dealing with the consequences of a bad roofing job. It can be very difficult to locate the origin of a roof leak because water can run once it enters through the roof. It may enter through one part of your roof and end up soaking the ceiling in an entirely different part of your house. That’s why a professional property evaluation for leak repair is the best route any homeowner can take.

How to Identify Roof Damage: The Interior Signs of a Roof Leak

Sometimes a roof leak is easy to spot in your home. But sometimes signs of water damage can be hidden in places like the attic or behind your walls. Water damage can take on different colors, textures and even smells, depending on the location of the leak. The most obvious sign of a roof leak is discoloration in the ceiling. If you see yellow, brown or copper-colored spots on your ceiling, you’ve got water damage.

What is the cause of a crack in my ceiling?

A discolored crack in your ceiling indicates a moisture problem. Sometimes an overhead leak can trickle between the ceiling drywall panels. This causes the joint tape to loosen, and a crack will form.

What does a roof leak do to my walls?

A roof leak can cause obvious signs of water damage to drywall including stains, sagging, bulging or actual collapse of the drywall. However, there may be more to this type of water damage than meets the eye.

One major issue homeowners can’t always see is mold. Mold growth begins inside wall cavities behind drywall within 24 to 48 hours after water finds its way inside. In fact, mold loves drywall. The drywall absorbs moisture, which activates mold spores, and the paper backing of drywall provides cellulose – a food that nourishes active growing mold.

Wet drywall may lose structural integrity that can’t be restored by drying alone. Because drywall swells when it’s wet, the material may pull away from fasteners and remain insecure even after drying. More often than not, drywall that has been damaged by a roof leak will need to be replaced.

How do you Inspect a Roof for Damage After Installation?

If you see some of these interior indicators of a roof leak, it is important to contact the Des Moines roofing experts at Superstorm Restoration to get your roof repaired as soon as possible. The first step you should take is to contact us to schedule a free property evaluation. We will tell you how severe your roof damage is and next steps for your roof repair.