If you happen to look up and see a brown-colored water stain on your ceiling, there's a good chance you have a water leak. If the stain is fairly large, it might indicate the leak has been going on for a while and there is a lot of damage that needs to be fixed. One reason you need to repair a wet ceiling as soon as possible is so you can prevent exposing your family to mold. Another reason is that the drywall becomes weak and crumbly when it's wet, and that means it could fall on someone's head and cause an injury. Here is an overview of how to handle a leak in your ceiling.
Catch Dripping Water
Drywall soaks up water like a sponge. If there is a big leak or if there is a leak every time it rains, eventually the ceiling becomes saturated and the water pours through the ceiling. When that happens, you want to catch the water in a bucket so it doesn't cause damage to your floor. Also, when water drips onto the drywall, it tends to flow and spread out, which causes the damage to spread. For that reason, you may want to drill or poke a hole in the area where it is dripping so water can flow freely from the ceiling. The area will need to be repaired anyway, so you won't cause more damage by poking a small hole through the drywall. This allows water to flow into the bucket rather than flow along the ceiling and cause more damage to the drywall.
Replace The Drywall
Drywall can't be dried out very well. Part of the problem is that water causes it to warp, buckle, and form blisters. Plus, mold can grow in it when it is damp. Therefore, you'll need to have the damaged part of the ceiling cut out and replaced with a new section of drywall. If the damaged area is very small, you might get by with a drywall patch, but in order to prevent mold, it is best to cut away the wet portion and replace it with dry material. This requires some skill and proper tools, so you may need to call in a water damage specialist to do the job properly especially if there is mold involved.
Repair The Leak
Before you repair the ceiling, you want to make sure the leak is repaired first. You may need to have your roof patched or a pipe replaced. Once that's done, you need to dry out the space above the ceiling. This could involve placing powerful fans in the attic to dry out the wood. You may even need to replace insulation if it is soaked with water. Because this is dangerous work due to mold concerns and deteriorated wood and drywall due to dampness, you'll probably want the professional service, like Minnesota Disaster Restoration Services, to handle drying out your attic so you stay safe. Plus, you'll have peace of mind knowing no hidden mold is left behind once the job is done.