Where Do Roof Leaks Come From?

Picture this –

Your alarm clock goes off. You stumble to the bathroom, turn on the shower and walk over to grab your towel. As you look up you see a murky brown stain on the ceiling.

Before you went to bed storms had rolled in and it rained all night. Now you notice a new spot on the ceiling you have never seen before.

What happened?

Well chances are, your roof system has some sort of leak and surprisingly enough it has probably been an ongoing process. The intense storm just revealed what had been forming for some time.

The sun in NOVA is strong.

A few years ago a buddy of mine called and said he noticed a stain in his bathroom ceiling. The first thing I said was it is probably a pipe collar.

In Northern Virginia, there is obviously cold winters and hot summers. The changes in weather, coupled with sun and humidity can cause roof components like pipe collars to age quickly.

An old, worn down, aging pipe collar can crack, allowing moisture to penetrate your roof.

Typically, when there is a roof leak, the cause is often the pipe collar or the vent stacks – the pipes that vent from different areas of your home. Fixing a pipe collar is an easy repair for your homes roof.

But that isn’t the only way a roof can leak….

The Roof System

A roof system as a whole as many working components. The goal for your roof system is to seal your home off while defending it from the elements while allowing for ventilation.

Top Dog Home Pro follows Virginia code requirements when it comes to installing a new roof. Leaks can come from many things in addition to pipe collars including:

  • -Flashing (Material used to cover joints)
  • -Lack of Ice & Water Shield
  • -Improper Nail Patterns
  • -Lack of Drip Edge
  • -Missing Shingles
  • Lack of roof cleaning
  • -Debris in Roof Valleys
  • -Aluminum Ridge Vents (Top Dog Home Pro does not use or ever recommend these)

As you can see from the list above, a leak can come from many areas. While a properly installed roof shouldn’t have any leaks, awareness is key.


Would you like to learn how Top Dog Home Pro separates itself from the rest?Learn about our trusted roofing process here.

A newly installed roof by Luke with Top Dog Home Pro takes into account all the possible issues a roof might have.

Pipe Collars.

Top Dog Home pro uses a Permaboot which is made in the USA. Additionally, permabootsare designed to protect the area around your roofs pipes for 50 years.

Ice & Water Shield.

Virginia code requires ice and water shield, which we use on every roof. Top Dog also installs drip edge at the gutter line on all roof edges and like mentioned above, we never use/never will use aluminum ridge vents.

Planning ahead.

Considering these potential problem areas ahead of time ensures a higher quality roof. Not to mention the 10 year labor warranty and CertainTeed lifetime product warranty.

So if the weather has hit your home and you live in Woodbridge, Manassas, Lake Ridge and the surrounding areas, simply reach out to us here or on our Facebook Page.

Have a great day & thanks for reading!

How to Clean and Maintain Your Home’s Gutters

gutter guards gutter cleaning gutter maintenance

I recently read that a homeowner should expect to budget 1-2% of their home’s purchase price for annual home maintenance. For example, a $300,000 home would cost the average homeowner roughly $3,000-$6,000 annually in home maintenance and renovations.


Not only does Top Dog Home Pro aim to provide premier home exterior services in Prince William County, we also aim to provide common maintenance tips to help you save money in the long run.


Today’s topic:

Gutter Maintenance & Gutter Guards


Why should you maintain your gutters?


Before getting into the most effective ways to maintain and clean your home’s gutter system, understanding the importance of gutters is a must. At first glance gutters really don’t seem that important… but they serve a huge purpose.


In a nutshell, the main purpose of a gutter system is to channel and funnel water off your home’s roof and a AWAY from the home. Worst case scenario, without gutters, water runoff could erode the soil around the home causing the foundation to possible be compromised.


On the lighter side, without a properly maintained and cleaned gutter system, debris accumulation and build up can cause unnecessary stress on gutter fasteners.


Read up on our Roofing Process here!


Recent Example: Debris accumulated at the end of a gutter where it met the home’s downspout. With all the recent rain, the water could not funnel down the down spout, therefore water was running off the corner of the home. This caused the downspout to disconnect from the gutter, and partially detach from the home. One large rain had already started to create erosion on the ground surface below.


Simply maintaining and cleaning your gutters 1-2x a year can decrease the likelihood of the gutters detaching from your siding or roof.


Common problems of improperly maintained gutters:


-Foundation Problems

-Moisture damage to plywood on roof/side of home

-Basement Flooding

-Shifted soil near patios & walkways



While some of the problems caused by gutters might seem self-explanatory, the others might seem shocking…. Like the mosquitoes. Believe it or not, clogged gutters can result in stagnant water – a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.


gutter guards no clog


Additionally, water runoff that is not properly funneled away from the home can cause soil shifts that can impact the foundation, walkway, or patios adjacent to your home.


However, here is how to simply avoid any of the above mentioned issues.


How do you clean and maintain your home’s gutter system?


In order to reduce the chances of problems with your home’s gutters, consider the following:


  1. Cleaning gutters in the Spring and  Fall.

  2. Installing gutter guards


It is safe to assume that if you live in a area where there are more leaf and pine needles debris, such as well-established areas like Reston, Fairfax, Springfield, Woodbridge, Dumfries, etc,  you will have debris in your gutters.


By cleaning your gutters out in the spring and fall, you will prevent any real build-up from severely impacting your exterior home.


To clean your gutters, you will need gloves, a hose and most likely a ladder. Depending on the layout and height of your home, this can be an extensive project. Remember to always be safe when getting on you roof, and it is best be to give us a call if you are hesitant about checking your gutters.


Why use Gutter Guards –


If cleaning your gutter sounds like a problem or a task you just don’t have the time for, consider installing gutter guards to save time and money in the long run.


Sometimes customers think the price of gutter guards might be a little high. However, if you were to take the average single family home gutter guard cost – approximately $1100,  and compare that to an annual gutter cleaning – $250, in 4 years your gutter guards pay for themselves.


For starters Top Dog Home Pro offers a 20 year non-clog warranty, paired with a 20 year Raindrop warranty. Essentially you save 16 years of cleaning when you use gutter guards with Top Dog Home Pro!!


raindrop gutter guard warranty


We have teamed up with Raindrop® to deliver gutter protection and make home maintenance easier. The Raindrop® gutter guard fits on every home, roof style and gutter system and is essential in providing a maintenance free & self-cleaning gutter protection system.


What makes Raindrop® Gutter Guard stand out from the rest is the system’s capacity to handle any amount of water – from a spring mist to a torrential downpour.  Keeping gutters clean and free of leaves using a gutter guard, is an excellent low-maintenance method to protect your home and gutter system.


If you have questions about your homes gutters, don’t hesitate to fill out the contact form or just reach out to us on our Facebook page!