Drip Drip Drip: 2 Ways To Find The Leak In Your Roof

Finding out that you have a leak in your roof is usually the easy part. You discover it when water begins dripping from your ceiling. Unfortunately, discovering the leak is easier than finding out where the leak actually is. You might think that the leak would be located where the water is dripping from. However, that's not always true. In some cases, the leak is actually uphill from where you found the drip. You don't have to replace the entire roof to repair one leak. Here's a few simple methods that will help you find the leak.

Take a Close Look at the Roof

To find the source of your leak, you should begin by conducting a visual inspection of your roof. You can do this using one of the following methods. First, walk back and forth on your roof in straight lines until you've inspected all the roofing material. You'll want to look for signs of visible damage, such as missing shingles or holes in the roof.  If you find visible damage, contact your roofing contractor and schedule repairs.

If you aren't able to locate the source of the leaks, you'll need to get inside your attic. This inspection should be conducted during the day. Go inside your dark attic and look for areas where light might be shining through from the outside. If you see light, mark those areas. When the repair technician comes out, show them the marks. They'll be able to begin their inspection at those locations.

Do the Water Test

If you're unable to locate the source of the leak using a simple visual inspection, it will be time to conduct the water inspection. For this inspection, you'll need a second person to help you. You will be on the roof with a hose, while the second person will be in the attic looking for leaks.

Supplies You'll Need

  • Slip resistant shoes
  • Ladder
  • Garden hose
  • 2 cell phones
  • Chalk
  • Flashlight


  1. Put your slip resistant shoes on.
  2. Send your partner into the attic with cell phone and a flashlight. The flashlight will help your partner to see the water when it starts to leak.
  3. Use your ladder to climb on the roof with your garden hose.
  4. Begin spraying water onto your roof in a steady stream. First apply water along the bottom edge of the roof.  This will allow you to move upwards on the dry portion of the roof.
  5. Apply water to one small section at a time so your partner can look for leaks in the attic. 
  6. Have your partner notify you by cell phone as soon as they see water leaking.
  7. Use a piece of chalk to mark the location on the roof.
  8. Continue moving up and across your roof until you've marked every leak.

If your roof is leaking, you need to get it repaired as quickly as possible. A leaky roof can lead to mold growth and can damage the structural integrity of your home. This is particularly true if the leak isn't repaired quickly enough. The information provided here will help you locate the leaks so that your roofing company will know where to begin repairing the damage.