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gonecat 02-17-2013 08:32 AM

moisture/condensation on ceiling and walls
Well folks, I hope this is the right place for this post.
I'm fairly certain there is a roof leak in my home.
Let me run the scenario by the readers and help me out if you can.

In my upstairs rooms I noticed spots of condensation buildup to the point where it is dripping. One spot is on the ceiling near where the chimney runs through the home. The other spots I noticed some condensation developing is on two of the outside facing walls of the home in an upstairs room.
Now I am not sure the wall condensation issue is due to roof issues or not. I have no idea as to why the condensation would be appearing here. I understand there could be temperature variation in the room, but that wouldn't seem to be right to me. What further information can I provide that might help narrow down the problems.

Thank you for your patience with my ignorance,

hammerlane 02-17-2013 08:40 AM

Condensation would be caused by too much humidity in the house. When warm, moisture-laden air comes into contact with a colder surface.

Do you have an attic to go in and look for roof leaks.

joecaption 02-17-2013 08:42 AM

#1 Please go back and add your location to your profile. Just look at the top right hand side of the page where it says welcome and tap that.
Sure sounds like ice dams to me.
The cause is lack of insulation, no air sealing and poor venting.

jagans 02-17-2013 12:30 PM

You probably have a combination of leaks fro ice damming, and leaking around an improperly flashed chimney. Condensation usually takes place as an over-all condition, not in particular areas.

Roof problems are very location/ temperature specific as Joe has stated. Why this forum does not require a poster to input their location before they can post is beyond comprehension to me. I have seen Joe ask for location thousands of times, and I am surprised at his incredible patience.

You may live in Florida, and here we are discussing ice dams.

Pictures are very important also. Some of the pros here, including Joe and yours truly can usually tell just from looking at a leak what is causing it. Take well lit wide angle and close-up in-focus pictures. and post them, and you will get solid, dependable answers.

Thank You

Gary in WA 02-17-2013 09:09 PM

As said already, pictures would help immensely;

Clicking on your name, it appears you are in Duluth, MN.
No/minimal insulation above the two spots with the attic at outside temps this time of year would give you local condensation.. need more info, as stated...


gonecat 02-18-2013 02:26 PM

oops on location
I forgot I'm a newbie to this particular forum and forgot to post my location.
Ice dam is likely the issue.

I am indeed in Duluth, Minnesota.

Nothing about this home would surprise me.
My brothers girlfriend is in the process of buying this home.
She and my brother lived here for around 9 years.
I have lived here for three. So, no roofing repairs or anything done to the interior by them or myself in the 12 years we've had the place.

The problem with this home, as I've seen with too many around this location, is simply poor workmanship by the previous remodeller(s). The work was done 'good enough' to make it look good and sell with complete disregard to 'long term' living.

I'm helping out my sister in law, who is two time cancer survivor, third time battling stage 4 breast cancer, by paying rent (making her house payment basically) so I'm not planning on spending a lot of money or time on something that is likely going to be a very expensive project.
The ceiling material (newbie guessing sheet rock) was nailed or secured in place, seemingly over the previous existing ceiling material. I have no clue and am afraid to 'poke around' to see if there are any weakened spots.
After running a dehumidifier, the moisture went away. I know, just a temporary cure for a big problem, I suspect.
I don't see any access panel(s) to where there should be an attic. I'm guessing the one spot where I seen condensation might very well be where the attic entrance was, simply covered over with the sheet rock.
But, without pulling the ceiling panels/covering, I won't be able to see how much damage has occurred to the structure or beams or insulation (which is likely soaking wet if it's seeping through the ceiling in spots)

am I pretty much looking at extensive repair or are there some shortcut 'good fixes' that will last longer?

thanks for the replies all the help is truly appreciated.


gonecat 02-18-2013 02:32 PM

gonecat 02-18-2013 02:37 PM

SeniorSitizen 02-18-2013 03:21 PM


Originally Posted by Gary in WA (Post 1119404)

Clicking on your name, it appears you are in Duluth, MN.


Does the forum not have a privacy statement for members? If not it should have in my opinion.

Gary in WA 02-18-2013 09:24 PM

It does indeed. I was using the "members profile" which all members/public can use to see previous posts by any listed member. These are publicly displayed. He happened to list his location in his first post under- "Introductions"


jagans 02-18-2013 09:27 PM

Can you get up in the attic and take some pictures of the underside of the roof deck where you are having these leaks? Take a lot of pictures at lower resolution so they can be posted. 640x480 is good enough for email.

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