At Property Rescue Services, we wish to ensure our clients are prepared for any worst-case scenario. This includes making sure they know what to do in the event of water damage in a ceiling somewhere on their property. As such, we have put together this guide on what you should do when a leak from a pipe, bad weather or overflowing appliances has caused water damage to your ceiling.
If you own a property in London and it has water damage to its ceilings, we are also more than capable of sending out our team to perform fast, specialist repairs. If this is something you would be interested in for your home or business, contact us and speak with a member of staff today.
Signs of Water Damage in a Ceiling
There are several signs that you may wish to look out for, if you suspect that a ceiling in your property has water damage. These include:
- Discolouration on ceilings, from where the water has stained the paint or finish
- Standing water that has no apparent source
- Bulges in the ceiling
- Mould or mildew growing in your home
- Musty odours around your property, as this may also be a sign of mould growing
- Rust forming on metal fixtures and fittings
If you have spotted any of these signs, it will be time to start searching for a potential cause of water damage in your property. If it is not possible to locate the source by yourself, this is not a cause for concern or a reason for you to be worried. Instead, you should simply contact a professional firm that offers leak detection as one of their services.
If you are interested in detecting the source of a leak on your property, please get in touch with us today. We will be able to find the cause of your problem, whether you have rain coming through your ceiling or a crack in a pipe. We will then be able to provide you with the repair work you need to ensure your property is returned to normal.
Preventing Water Damage in a Ceiling
There are several ways you can help to prevent water damage in your property. These may not stop accidents or emergencies from taking place, but will help to prevent leaks which may be caused by general wear and tear:
- Inspecting and repairing your roof regularly, including replacing any tiles, shingles or flashing that have broken
- Ensuring your windows are properly sealed, so they do not let in excess moisture
- Having your drains and pipes regularly inspected and surveyed by professional engineers
Each of these should help to prevent some of the most common causes of leaks in your home.
Ceiling Repair for Water Damage
There are several steps that you should go through before you carry out any DIY repairs or attempt to treat water damage on your property. The first of these should always be making a home insurance claim. Your insurance provider will most likely cover the cost of having any water damage repaired, but they will need to send a loss adjuster to ensure the price the company is paying out in your claim matches the cost of the work.
In many cases, insurance providers will not cover the cost of repair if you did not take reasonable steps to ensure it was prevented. If there is reason to believe that you knew about the problem for some time, they may also reject your claim. For example, if you have a leaky roof that’s been caused by wear and tear over the years, your provider is less likely to cover the costs. However, they may provide the payments if you need to treat water damage from a burst pipe or other emergencies.
Stabilise or Contain the Water Damage
If you intend to fix the water damage yourself, the first step in this process will be to contain the damage by shutting off the stopcock (if necessary) and collecting the water in a suitable container. This should be a vessel such as a bucket. If your ceiling is bulging and you suspect there is a large amount of water trapped behind, you may also consider puncturing a small hole to let it out.
If you would prefer to avoid any frustration or annoyance from intermittent dripping noises, you may wish to place an old tea towel at the bottom of the bucket.
Find and Identify the Source of the Damage
When carrying out DIY repairs on water damaged ceilings, you will need to find the source of the problem. There are several common areas and causes of water damage in your property, each of which you may wish to check for:
- Roof problems, such as loose tiles, crumbling shingles, broken flashing or weakened seals around roof vents
- Leaky or burst pipes around your property
- Leaking radiators around your property
- Overflowing toilets, sinks, baths or showers
- Gaps in caulking that need to be resealed
Dry the Damage Out
If you are going to treat any kind of water damage on your ceiling, you must always make sure the affected area is dry before you begin. This is especially important for ceiling cavities, because the moisture may develop mould.
Repair the Damaged Ceiling
How you should fix your damaged ceiling will depend on the type of ceiling material you have. We have presented some options here:
How to Repair a Plaster Ceiling with Water Damage
If the water damage in your plaster ceiling is coming through a small crack that’s letting in rain or leaked water from a pipe, you may be able to seal it with fibreglass mesh tape, before plastering over it. You may also be able to fix slightly larger cracks with the aid of plaster buttons and drywall screws. However, these repair techniques should only be carried out on damaged sections measuring 4 inches across or fewer. For anything larger, please consult a specialist like us.
The wall should be allowed to dry before you begin the work. The damaged material should then be scraped off with a putty knife, before the area is cleaned with a damp cloth. You will then need to apply between one and three coats of stain-sealing primer or primer-sealer designed for your ceiling material. Once the primer is dry, apply a setting-type joint compound. If it’s drywall, apply ceiling paint.
You may be tempted to apply ordinary paint over the stain without carrying out any further work, but this should not be done. Interior latex paints are water-soluble, meaning that the water stain will dissolve into the wet paint as it dries. This eventually results in the stain being visible again.
How to Repair a Water Damaged Artex Ceiling
If you need repairs for an Artex ceiling, you do not necessarily have to repair it using Artex. If your ceiling has a stipple finish, you can also use a thin layer of patching plaster. This should be applied with the flat side of a trowel and stippled to suit your design. Repaint the area once it has dried.
If your Artex ceiling does not have a stipple design, it may not be possible to replicate the pattern you had before it was damaged by water. In this case, you may have to call a specialist to carry out repair work.
How to Repair Water Damage in a Popcorn Ceiling
If you have an older property with a popcorn ceiling, or a ceiling that is textured, you will need to wait for the affected area to dry. After this, you should remove the damaged texture by scraping it off, catching the debris on a piece of cardboard. Block off the surrounding area with tarp before spraying the area you intend to work on with primer, then respray a new layer of texture onto your ceiling. This should be done to the instructions found on the can.
If you intend to carry this out, we must advise caution. Popcorn ceilings in older homes may contain asbestos, which will become hazardous if allowed to become airborne. You may wish to contact a professional firm to have this work carried out, if you are not experienced in its removal.
Contacting a Professional Service
We would always recommend that you do not attempt to fix large amounts of water damage by yourself, especially if you do not have DIY or restoration experience. It may be possible for you to carry out repair work on small areas, but if the damage is too great, it is always recommended that you contact a professional service. This will prevent accidental damage from being done to your property, and may protect you from harm if the work needs to be completed in a high space, such as an attic.
For Professional Repairs on a Water Damaged Ceiling
Here at Property Rescue Services, we stand ready and waiting to assist clients whenever their property has signs of water damage in the ceiling. If you suspect a pipe has burst behind your Artex ceiling, or rain is coming past a loose series of tiles and is staining a popcorn ceiling, we will have the solution to see it is put right again. We can even provide your property with specialist repairs and restoration work, if needed.
If you have a property in our catchment area and you require assistance with repairing a water damaged ceiling, please speak with us on the phone or send us an email today. One of our members of staff will be glad to speak with you, before our team is sent to your location to treat and fix the water damage.
Our work will be carried out to ensure minimal disruption to your day, and all of our prices are certain to be suitable for your budget. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask when you get in touch.