What’s a “roof leak”?
For most people, a roof is leaking when the ceiling gyproc starts to discolour, or bulge, or when the paint starts to bubble.
This usually happens after a heavy rain, or at the end of winter when the snow is melting off the roof. Yes, those are usually leaks. They are easy to notice and impossible to ignore. However, the sad thing is that the cause of the leak is usually several years in the making, and by the time the leak is noticed, there is lots more damage that has occured. In other words, the apparent and visible leak is preceded by “invisible” leaks that start (often) many years before the leak is apparent. This post is about these invisible leaks.
The winter surprise
Metal roofs are much better products compared to asphalt shingles when considering durability, performance, and resistance to the weather. However, one aspect of metal roofs that often surprise new owners is the difference in behaviour during the winter, if the metal is a smooth metal like painted steel, painted aluminum, or native copper.
If you have a tar-and-gravel low-slope roof (typical of constructions in many areas in Montreal), you may consider changing the roofing material to something else. Two common alternatives to tar-and-gravel are two-ply membrane assembly and standing-seam hidden-fastener metal panels.