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The Most Common Roof Problems in Swords

As one of Ireland’s largest towns, Swords has the unique distinction of being populated by old and new buildings. Continuing development in Swords – in particular over the last 30 years – has seen both the population and property numbers explode. While it’s great to see a place like Swords expanding, the speed at which properties have been built – in particular during the Celtic Tiger years (1994 – 2007) – mean that Swords has incredible diversity in build quality.

Unfortunately, during the boom years, hastily constructed properties may not be up to the standard of today's builds. In subsequent years these boom properties require extra care and attention to fix issues with everything from the property's structure to its roof.

Of course, it would be wrong to say that only boom properties have roofing issues. Properties that predate the Celtic Tiger, can also show roofing issues if neglected. Even brand new roofs can be damaged due to adverse weather conditions, pest infestations or due to wear and tear.

With the diversity of buildings in Swords in mind, we want to outline the most common roofing issues we’ve found with Swords based properties and explain how best to approach addressing these issues.

Roof Leaks

No surprises here. Like buildings everywhere, the most common roofing issue Swords property owners face is leakages. Roof leakages can be caused by any number of factors including broken shingles, cracked slates, etc. Generally, most roof leaks appear around the roof's chimney, gutters, pipes or vents. If you can access your attic, the best way to check for a leak is to use a flashlight to locate damp stains and/or mould growth. A roof leak isn’t a DIY fix. Leakages can cause serious damage to the property and therefore a professional roofer should be hired as soon as the leak is discovered.

Damage to the Roof’s Flashing

Second only to leaks as the most common roofing issue, is problems with the roof’s flashing. Flashing is usually made of plastic or sheet metal and it’s used to protect creases on everything from skylights to chimneys. If this material becomes loose or if it begins to crack, then the roof may be exposed to water and moisture.

The best way to detect if you have an issue with your flashing is to go on the roof and inspect the areas around chimneys, skylights, vents or pipes. You should be looking for cracks, holes or any other type of damage.

If you spot an issue with the flashing the entire plastic sheet or stainless steel sheet will need to be replaced. This may also include replacing the slates or shingles around the flashing. Again this is a job best left to a professional roofing contractor.

Missing or Broken Shingles/Slates

This is a particular problem with older properties. Eventually, the sealant which holds shingles and slates in place can begin to wear off. Although we mostly see this with older properties in Swords the issue isn’t completely isolated to more mature buildings. Bad weather, rodent infestations or just everyday wear and tear can affect the competency of slates and shingles on relatively young properties.

Most DIY stores sell boxes of singles and slates, so if you’re confident in your handyman credentials you can attempt to replace the missing slates and shingles yourself.

Issues with Pooling Water

A common issue with flat roofs, although it can be seen on pitched roofs as well, is pooling water. When water isn’t fed away from the roof, it begins to pool and eventually becomes stagnant, pooling water will cause damage to your roof if not addressed. It’s not enough just to get rid of the water, the root cause of why the water is pooling needs to be addressed.

On pitched roofs, stagnant water is likely caused by blocked gutters. So cleaning your gutters should solve the problem. However, pooling water on a flat roof could be a sign that the flat roof isn't properly tapered; if this is indeed the issue you need to hire a flat roofing specialist as soon as possible.

Other Roofing Issues in Swords

The above are just some of the more common roofing issues we regularly run into in Swords. However, after 25 years of roof repairs in Swords, we have seen just about every problem that can happen with a roof. If you have noticed any of the above problems with your swords roof or some other issue, please call us now.


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