Finding out in the middle of a rainstorm that you have a roof leak is a stressful experience, but taking the right steps to protect your home can help you remain calm and limit the damage. If you want to know what to do with a leaking roof, read on for our approach in six steps.
Steps to Take for a Leaking Roof
1: Start by Clearing the Interior Area
The first step is to clear the area of all furniture, electronics, and other possessions that could be damaged by rainwater. Create a perimeter of at least a couple of feet as there can be splashing.
2: Protect the Area and Collect Rainwater
Use whatever you can to cover the carpeting or hardwood floors, including tarps, painter’s plastic, or even towels if it’s all you have. The next step in what to do with a leaking roof is to collect every bucket, trash can, and other wide-mouthed containers you have and position them around the area to collect as much rain as possible. This is also a good time to go up into the attic with a flashlight and to see if there are similar precautions that you can take there.
3: Puncture the Ceiling If Necessary
If water is collecting above the ceiling to the point that the drywall is bulging, set up containers beneath the bulge and then pierce it with a long-bladed screwdriver or similar tool. The drywall already needs to be replaced and leaving it intact will allow the water to cause damage in a much wider area.
4: Contact a Local and Trusted Roofer
Once the situation is reasonably stable, the next step in what to do with a leaking roof is to contact a trusted roofer that is established in your region. Many roofing companies offer emergency services, and even if they can’t repair the roof right away due to the weather, they can tarp the roof and take other precautions that will mitigate the water intrusion.
5: Contact Your Homeowners Insurance Company
Most insurance companies have 24-hour hotlines. Call the hotline for your company. Tell them what has happened and begin the claim process. Contacting them tonight means that they should be able to have an appraiser out to your home in the morning.
6: Document the Damages
Use your phone to take pictures throughout the process. This will provide evidence to the appraiser in case some of the damage has been repaired. Your roofer will likely do this automatically, but make sure they’re getting pictures on the roof and other areas to which you don’t have easy access.
Victory Is Here to Help in New Jersey
If you’ve experienced a roof leak in your New Jersey home, contact Victory Home Remodeling for help. We are a highly experienced roofing contractor that performs precision roof repairs using the highest-quality materials. You can also call us at if you have any additional questions about what to do with a leaking roof.