Dealing with a ceiling leak: a step-by-step action plan

Don't panic if you've found water leaking from the ceiling. Learn how to deal with the leak in a few simple steps.

9 August 2019

An orange bucket in the middle of the floor, collecting water dripping from the ceiling
In the home

Key steps

  • Locate the leak first.
  • Look for old or faulty roof tiles and/or pipes.
  • Faulty appliances should be fixed or replaced.
  • Switch off the water, either at the mains or by turning off taps.
  • Always fix the leak before fixing the ceiling.
  • Ensure the ceiling is fully dry before fixing.

When the ceiling under the bathroom starts dripping water, it's easy to panic. Fear not, however, as we are about to provide you with a clear and methodical step-by-step approach for sorting out water leaking from the ceiling.

Take care to keep on top your house maintenance to prevent leaks occuring. For example, regularly clear out gutters, and organise for professional roof tile maintenance. It's a good idea to keep notes of when one type of maintenance was last done so you know when to schedule the next session.

Dealing with water leaking from the ceiling: easy steps to sort a ceiling leak

Got a ceiling leak? If you can hear or see the dripping of water coming through the ceiling, there are a few easy steps you need to take to get the issue fixed.

1. Firstly, locate the original source of the leak.

There are a few places that could be the cause of a ceiling leak, such as:

  • Poor or old tiling on the roof allowing water to pass through in bad weather conditions.
  • Blocked gutters generally caused by bird nests, or overgrown trees.
  • Old or poorly installed pipes, or those which have become damaged.
  • Water from your bath or shower leaking through the ceiling.
  • Faulty appliances such as washing machines or dishwashers.

2. Secondly, stop the water coming in.

Once you know where the leak is located, it’s important to stop the flow of water and prevent further damage to the ceiling and anything below the leak. You can do this by:

  • Shutting off the water at the mains, especially if the leak is caused by a faulty pipe.
  • Turning off the tap, shower or appliance that may be causing a leak.

3. Before fixing the ceiling, you should ensure that two steps are taken:

  • The ceiling leakmust be stopped and fixed. There is no point in stopping water leaking from the ceiling under a bathroomor other ceiling if you turn the water on and it begins to leak again.
  • The ceiling should be fully dry. You can hire an industrial fan to get the job done quickly and efficiently.

4. If need be, always consult a professional.

This applies to both the fixing of the leak as well as the fixing of the ceiling!

Now you have dealt with the water leaking through ceiling, it’s time to clean up any left-over mess. Read our article on how to remove water stains which will help you with the clean-up.