When a roof loses shingles, it starts leaking right? Well, in most cases. Lost shingles do often lead to leaks — if not immediately, eventually. However, it is important to note that missing shingles are not the sole cause of leaks. There are many other ways water can seep in while all of the shingles are still present! Here are some leak-causing problems other than missing shingles.
Raised shingles along the edge of the roof.
This is a problem commonly seen in spring. The shingles right along the edge of the roof have become lifted or raised along one edge while the other edge has remained attached to the roof. This occurs when water drips down under the edge of the shingle and then freezes. As it freezes, the water expands, causing it to lift the shingle up. If you had ice dams (big ice formations) along the edge of your roof over the winter, there's a good chance you have lifted shingles. It will only be a matter of time before water seeps under the lifted edge.
A roofer can correct this problem by cementing down the edges of the lifted shingles. Then, to prevent the same issue from recurring next spring, they'll want to add insulation to your attic to keep the snow from melting at the peak, trickling down, and re-freezing.
Sometimes leaks have absolutely nothing to do with the shingles and are instead caused by an issue with the flashing. (Flashing are the metal pieces that sit in a roof valley and also surround roof vents and chimneys.) Water can seep behind flashing that is pulled away from the roof's surface. To fix this issue, your roofer will often remove and replace the flashing. Gluing the flashing down is a quick fix, but it won't last since the already bent flashing will continually be straining against the glue.
Missing siding along dormers.
Does your home have dormers projecting from the roof? If so, some of the siding along the edge of the dormer may come loose, allowing water to seep in. This is a pretty common problem, as water seeps down along the edge of the dormer, pooling near its base and causing the lower siding to deteriorate. A roofer can replace the siding or recommend a siding contractor to do it for you. This will reseal the dormer and put an end to the leaks.
Missing shingles can cause leaks, but they are not the sole cause of leaks! Keep an eye out for these other contributing problems and contact a roofing repair contractor for more help.