Sometimes the first signs of water damage are not the discolored patterns you see in your ceilings. Water damage can be more covert, sneaking in under your roof and disrupting other systems in your home. Electric attic fans and ceiling light fixtures may be the first indication that you have a leaking roof and some possible water damage. Here is how these items are affected by a leaking roof and how to verify that it is water damage causing the problems with these electrical fixtures.
Noticing the First Sign
If you notice that a ceiling light or attic fan does not work or only works intermittently, something is going on under your roof. While it could be animals, like mice or squirrels munching on the wiring, it could also be water damage. When these items stop working completely and are no longer responsive to the switches that control them, the wiring from above may need a closer examination.
Getting a Closer Look
If you can crawl up into your attic and take a peek at the wires around the attic fan or around the area where the non-funcitoning ceiling light sits, you can tell if the problem is caused by either animals or something else. Animals will chew the plastic coating off of your wires. If there are no signs of chewing, but there is a lot of moisture around these areas, you have water damage. The water has crept into the electrical workings of these fixtures and short-circuited them completely.
Continued contact with water results in a lack of electricity to these fixtures and a potentially dangerous situation with arching or wires that spark and start a fire. If it looks like water damage is the cause of your electrical problems, or you cannot get under the roof area where the attic fan or ceiling light sits, call an electrician. He or she will remove the items from the ceiling or roof while wearing the proper protective equipment and examine the wires to see what is the matter.
Fixing the Water Damage First
Without a doubt, you will need to address the leaking roof and the water damage first before you have the electrician fix the light or the fan. If you do not have a water restoration contractor and/or a roofing contractor look at the leaking roof and water damage, you can expect these electrical fixtures to continue to have problems. Stop the leaks and/or fix the roof first, and you will not only correct your potentially dangerous issues with electricity, but you will also clear out the water damage before it begins to show through your ceilings and in your attic.
For assistance with water damage, talk to a professional like Western Skies Restoration Inc.