Roofs are not invincible, though sometimes they seem to be so. This is one area of your home/property that spends the entirety of its working life absolutely in rains, or in sun or in a cyclone or during heat waves, etc. It doesn’t even get respite from pests and nests also. Hence roofs are susceptible to damages as there are innumerable ways in which moisture can intrude the roofs. Here, we will discuss eight such common moisture intrusion sources on the roof.
1. Cracks and hollowness
Roofs can develop cracks over time. This can due to weather, aging of concrete and poor workmanship. Talking about the weather, severe storm, torrential rain, snow, and heat can take a toll on your roof. Sue to these, hairline cracks will start to appear and with time it will increase and expand. Hollowness is mostly caused by poor workmanship. And in both cases, cracks will appear. Very gradually and over a period of time, the water that has seeped in through the cracks will give pressure on the reinforcements and ultimately corrosion will start and can cause serious damage to your structure. Therefore, it can lead to structural crack after a prolonged period of time.
2. Through Parapet Walls and Roof Flooring Junction
Did you ever notice or even think that your roof covers your most valuable asset, your home? Water can enter through parapet walls and roof flooring junction. Let us discuss how. Before we proceed there are two things we want you to know. One is that a junction is the weakest point of a building and secondly the word cove indicates a concave curved surface or an arched section of the wall surface. In technical terms, this point is called damaged coving. If you notice a surface crack in these areas, be alarmed! Water will intrude through the cracks and once the water starts entering through the cracks, it will slowly start deteriorating all other materials in its way and eventually after a prolonged period, attack the base structure. A structural crack is the last thing you want. So do not ignore a surface crack.
3. Rain Water Intrusion through Parapet Walls
No matter how rough and tough your roof is, it is still vulnerable to the wear and tear of the everyday. But some days are tougher than the other days. The rainy season is one such time. The incessant, torrential rains are detrimental to your roof. On every rainy season, water will seep in through plaster, then through bricks. Now both plaster and bricks absorb water as much as they can. The rest of the water will flow down obviously due to laws of gravity. This will result in cracks on the roofs, cracks on top flash, surface cracks, paint deterioration on the top flash and elsewhere. Through aging and weathering of plaster surface, hairline cracks arise, and then the cracks increase and expand which will enable moisture to enter and damage the roof.
4. Through Joint Gaps in Roof Flooring finish/Deteriorated Joint Gaps in roof flooring
Attention Home/Property Owners! Do you have a customised roof; in the sense that you have used tiles, stones, laminates over concrete? Then this is the point that you should sit up and take notice. Due to constant stress on joints i.e. expansion and contraction of tiles and UV attacks, the filler materials worsen and at also some places there will be complete raking out of filler materials and there arises a joint gap which becomes a pathway for the water to enter. With time, water will seep in the roof slab and since there are no provisions for drainage below the tiles, the stagnant water will start damaging the roof.
5. Inadequate grouting in rainwater outlet
No matter how strong your roof is, it is still prone to moisture intrusion. Let us first know what rainwater outlet is. It is the outlet through which the surface water (that can be water used to wash the roof or rainwater) flows down the drain. There generally remains a gap between the outlet face and the PVC pipe. When the water flows, the gap in between these two soaks some amount of water, thus leading to water intrusion. Hence this is a vital source that needs to be taken care of.
6. Through overhead water tank
Moisture/water intrusion through overhead water tank arises in the long turn. The overhead water tank obviously doesn’t remain empty. The water absorption capacity of concrete is almost zero but due to low or no maintenance and poor workmanship, dampness occurs and the effects are seen on the outside of the tank in the long run. And ultimately it will weaken the entire overhead water tank structure.
7. Improper Slope
Every other home/property owner has faced roofing problems at some point in their lives. The improper slope causes the water to pool, or form little pool/s or water pockets on top of the roof. This can cause problems in the long run. Water accumulation on the roof is very harmful. Water will percolate through the surface where there are water accumulations causing damages on the roof and everything underneath. The improper slope leading to pooled water on the roof is a very common source of water/moisture intrusion. Proper sloping is important to allow the water to flow/drain off, keeping your roof free from water damage.
Your roof takes on the elements so that you don’t have to, so it’s only justified and appropriate that you return the favour by repairing it and maintaining it when it’s been damaged. In fact, if you see the first signs of damage, you should immediately take the help of a proper home repairing company. Always remember that your roof is the first layer of defense when it comes to protecting your most valuable assets; your home and the loved ones living in it.