My Commercial Roof is Leaking: What Can I do?


The worst time to realize that you need a roof repair is during a rain storm…but it happens. In the morning, everything will be fine but that afternoon shower could bring a stream of water into your commercial or industrial facility.

Don’t Panic!

Over the past 38 years, our team of roofing experts has seen this happen more than we can count. But if you are prepared and maintain the leak, you can prevent further damage to your facility and the property inside.

That’s why we put together this action plan for when you find a leak in your commercial, industrial or manufacturing facility.


Signs of A Leaking Commercial Roof

Stained Ceiling/Walls

Whether you have ceiling tiles or other types of ceiling systems in your facility, extended exposure to water will create a discolored area of your ceiling. If the leak is near a wall, the water stains could run down the corresponding wall, if this is the case, there could also be water damage within the wall.


Odor/ Mold

Warehouse Roof Leak

A foul smell in your facility could be a red flag for hidden mold. Mold grows in moist environments, so if water is constantly entering your building, there is a high chance that mold could grow and spread. A mold problem in your commercial facility should not be taken lightly as it could cause illness.

Read More: Mold Remediation in Commercial Buildings Guide from the EPA


Water Dripping/Puddles Inside

The most sure fire sign of a commercial roof leak is when you can visibly see water entering your building, whether it is a puddle on the floor or dripping above your head. This type of leak could cause damage to not only your roof and building structure, but it could damage equipment and other items inside the building as well.


What to Do When Your Commercial Roof Is Leaking


Minimize Interior Damage

When you see water flowing into your building, clear the area of people, equipment, and supplies to reduce damage. When the area is clear, collect the water in a bucket or similar receptacle to keep it from collecting on your floor.

If you have items that you can’t relocate, cover them with plastic to protect them from water damage.


Mark the Point of Entry

Make sure you mark where your leak is located. Marking the visible leaks is important for when you talk to your contractors and insurance agents. All you have to do is simply mark with tape on the ceiling or the floor where the water was entering your building.

It’s best to do this while the leak is occurring, because it may be difficult to locate the leak after the area has dried.


Look for More Problem Areas

Roof Leak in Office Building

Hopefully, your leak is only limited to one area, but chances are there are other leaks in your building. Look around your facility for more problem areas. Keep in mind, that once the weather clears and the water dries, it may be difficult to find other leaks, so it’s best to search your facility while it is still raining.

If you have a leak while there is no rain in your area, investigate other causes. Some examples include plumbing or air conditioning.

Free Download: Roofing Contractor Quote Checklist


Call a Commercial Roofing Contractor

After you maintain the situation…you have to get that leak fixed! Reach out to area contractors to have them assess your roof and provide a project quote. They will ask to see where the internal leaks are along with examining the roof system.

Read More: Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) Roofing Contractor Qualifications

When dealing with a leaking roof, you usually have three options to fix the problem:

  1. Repair the immediate area
  2. Restore the top coating
  3. Replace the entire system


Your roofing contractor will recommend which solution is available to you based on the severity of the damage.

Download: Should Your Repair, Restore or Replace Your Commercial Roof?


Call Your Insurance Agent

If your facility has received internal or roof damage, make sure you let your insurance agent know. If your insurance policy covers interior damage from roof leaks and the cost of repairing your roof, inform your agent so that you are adequately compensated.

Read More: Business Water Damage Insurance


Review Your Warranty

Look back in your files to review you current roofing system’s warranty. Your roof may be under warranty from the contractor or manufacturer, and it may be covered depending on what the damage is from.

If you have recently installed a new roofing system, make sure to contact your contractor to see if they can help fix the problem, but it’s smart to get quotes from other contractors in your area.

Read More: Best Commercial Roofing Contractors in Cleveland, Ohio


No matter how you treat a commercial roof leak, it’s important to remedy the problem before it grows. Even the smallest leak can cause serious problems if not treated. Water getting through your roofing system can cause considerable damage to your building from mold to structural damage.

If you are looking for maintenance, repair or replacement for your facilities roof, fill out our quote form for your free no-obligation commercial roof quote from our team of experts.

Commercial Roof Leak?

Author: Rufus West

Rufus West is a commercial roofing expert! You may see him on the West Roofing website and also on the West Roofing social media pages, giving fun facts and tips about the company and roofing industry.

Just like West Roofing System’s roof solutions, he isn’t bothered by water—it simply rolls off of his back!

  • Adam Sharpley

    May 30, 2017 at 9:58 am Reply

    You are right about spotting the leakages while it still is raining and mark them. Consulting a professional and experienced roofing contractor is always a great idea to inspect and identify leakages more effectively.

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  • Steve White

    July 16, 2017 at 2:46 am Reply

    A roof leak is always untimely. Great advice about marking the leaks while it is raining so the contractor will be able to repair them all. I think it is also a good idea to have regular maintenance completed so small issues can be spotted and taken care of before major problems occur.

  • Austin Roofers

    July 19, 2017 at 7:13 am Reply

    ​Think about your own safety first. You should always assess the situation thoroughly before you begin any roofing repair job.

    This is because rushing up to fix your roof as soon as you notice a problem could result in a serious accident. For instance, you should never try to fix a roof when it is raining or extremely windy outside for obvious reasons.

    I am living in Austin and our Roofers did great job at my house.

  • Fort Worth Roofer

    July 31, 2017 at 11:30 pm Reply

    My team and I just finished working on a distribution center’s leaking roof. They were able to detect the leak based on a foul smell. We were able to fix it before any serious damage occurred. Great Post!

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