When a homeowner notices their bathroom ceiling leaking, their first thought might be to call the plumber. But sometimes, a wet bathroom ceiling is actually caused by a roof leak.
Pipe boots are a type of flashing that is used around exhaust pipes that come out of your roof, and they’re usually the culprit when your roof is leaking above your bathroom. Over time, old pipe boots can corrode and breakdown from ultraviolet rays. You can tell if your pipe boot needs to be replaced just by looking at it; if it’s cracked and broken, then it needs to be replaced.
The downside is, pipe boots often do not last as long as the roofs they are installed on. While you can replace a damaged pipe boot with a brand new one, we recommend installing ultimate pipe flashing instead. Ultimate pipe flashing is made of silicone and it stands up to a variety of weather conditions. These last a lot longer than regular pipe boots and you won’t have to worry about your bathroom ceiling leaking.
If you take a look at your pipe boot and it’s not necessarily broken or cracked, there could be other reasons why it’s causing a roof leak over your bathroom. If improperly installed, debris may get caught between the pipe boot and shingles, causing water to build up during heavy rainfalls and leaking into your roof. To repair, clear out the debris between the pipe boot and surrounding shingles. Then, cut the shingles back 1 inch from the base of the flashing and put a thin layer of caulk underneath the shingles. This will allow more room for water to flow around your pipe flashing without trapping debris between the spaces.
Another reason why your roof might leak above your bathroom is from exposed nails that have corroded. If exposed nails were not properly caulked, the nail heads with break down and your roof will leak. Replace any corroded nail heads with new roofing nails. Seal the new nails, as well as any old nail holes, with a little bit of caulk.
While some pipe boot problems are easily fixable, it’s important to take the right safety measures and precautions before climbing on top of your roof. Never climb your roof in the rain or if your roof is still wet from rainfall.
If you are not comfortable climbing your roof or if your roof is very steep, give IBEX Roof a call. We will be happy to inspect your roof to confirm the source of your leak and fix it the right way so that your roof will continue to last through the years.