Edmonton Ceiling Leaks: What Should You Do?

An Edmonton ceiling leak visible through a growing moisture stain on the ceiling of a home.

Are discolored rings, wet spots, or water stains forming on your ceiling? Edmonton ceiling leaks can be tricky to diagnose and complicated to fix. Did the water saturate your plaster or drywall? Water can compromise many materials in properties and could lead to costly structural damage so spreading moisture will lead to widespread problems if you don't identify the cause of that problem and fix it correctly.

Ceiling leaks are serious issues that need to be addressed immediately because it often takes much more water to come through the ceiling than you would think, which leaves that space above your ceiling vulnerable to mold growth, mildew, and rot. If you can complete quick steps to mitigate the damage, that will be good, but severe water damage should still always be investigated and resolved by certified professionals.

Your Edmonton plumber will take the necessary measures to alleviate this emergency and make the necessary repairs. They also know when it’s time to get water damage experts involved. Our team at Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Edmonton is here to help and answer any questions.

Edmonton Ceiling Leak Response Plan

  1. Move any nearby furniture and electronics to stop the water from damaging those vulnerable items.
  2. Grab a bucket to catch the drips and stop the liquid from spreading (—if possible, a deep bucket, so the drips won’t splash).
  3. Clean up the puddle on the floor before it causes water damage to your subfloors.
  4. If you see signs of moisture spreading further, turn off your water and ensure that no fixtures, appliances or any other equipment in your home are currently using water. If that stops the spread, then it’s likely you have an issue with your plumbing system that must be fixed.
  5. For any Edmonton ceiling leaks caused by plumbing problems, or for those that you’re unable to identify, call your local plumber for professional advice and prompt repairs.

Roof Leaks Vs. Plumbing Leaks — Causes of Edmonton Ceiling Leaks

The most obvious causes come from incidents when Edmonton is experiencing a heavy downpour, as a leak during a storm could signify roof damage, or cracks in your foundation if your basement ceiling is also leaking. But what could it be if it happens on a normal day? Perhaps you have noticed strange plumbing noises like running water, whistles, and hisses behind the walls, in the ceiling of your basement, or in your overall plumbing system. If it’s not a leaky roof, then the main cause of your problem is probably plumbing related.

Have you noticed noises coming and going and are unsure of their meaning? In that case, your professional plumber can provide Edmonton plumbing diagnosis and inspection service to help you find and fix any issues with your plumbing system that could be causing that moisture damage.

Edmonton Ceiling Leak: Roof Causes

It doesn’t matter how old your roofing system is, some causes of damage are beyond your control, such as bird nests in your gutters or damage caused by a storm, which all affect your roof’s health. Overall physical damage is the most common roofing issue to result in further complications. Common roof causes include:

Damaged Roof Flashing

These are the thin flat metal pieces that you place on the joints under your shingles; they are designed to repel water. However, some flashing is exposed and can suffer weather damage that leads to corrosion. This causes large cracks and can lead to ceiling leaks.

Damaged Shingles

Sometimes heavy storms in Edmonton are able to blow shingles off your roof. If that’s the case, you might be able to spot the affected area and confirm that your Edmonton ceiling leak has been caused by roof damage. Shingles that are missing, or those that are still in place but are damaged, need to be replaced.

Unsecured Roofing Valley

A roof valley describes how two roof slopes meet. You may find many types of roof valleys in Edmonton that serve different functions, depending on a house’s design and architectural structure, but a roof valley's ultimate purpose is to direct rainwater into gutters and downspouts effectively. These slopes need to be properly sealed to prevent water from seeping through.

Damaged Roof Vent Boot

This is the pipe that sticks out of your roof—some people in Edmonton call it the plumbing vent boot. It’s designed to regulate air pressure so that wastewater can effectively move through your drain lines—and it’s typically connected to your bathroom and kitchen, where you deal with water the most. A roof vent is securely sealed with flashing but can lose effectiveness over time, which could result in ceiling leaks. That could also happen with any other vents on your roof.

Insufficient Attic Ventilation

We often find leaks occur on the top floor ceiling of an Edmonton home in the winter after their roof was replaced. When your roof has insufficient venting to allow the attic space to breathe, the warm moist air from your home makes its way into your attic and the moisture freezes and remains in the attic because it is a cold zone. Once the weather in Edmonton warms up outside, all this ice melts and shows up as a ceiling leak, often in many places on that top floor ceiling. The only way to fix this problem is to properly ventilate the attic to allow that warm air to escape.

Edmonton Ceiling Leak: Plumbing Causes

Hidden Leaks

You have probably heard before that plumbing pipes are buried in your walls and floors, but it’s not uncommon for them to be in your ceilings as well—especially below bathrooms and utility areas. If any of those hidden lines suffer from ruptures, bursts, or even loosening connections, it could result in a hidden leak that causes damage to your ceiling.

Water Hammer

Do the water lines hidden in your wall or ceiling make noises? That could be caused by high water pressure. Imagine running water for a bath, and you abruptly turn off the faucet. This creates high pressure in the lines because the water has nowhere to go, so it bangs against the copper, making it sound like someone is hitting them. The typical term for this is water hammer (or hydraulic shock). It’s usually no sign of concern—you can change your water pressure to reduce the noise or hire a plumber to apply straps to secure the lines or tighten them with insulation—but if you leave it untreated, it could eventually lead to a ceiling leak or line break somewhere else.

Toilet Seals

Most toilets use a wax seal to form a seal between the toilet and the toilet flange on the floor. If the seal is broken it will often result in a leak between the two, which usually shows up as a leak in the ceiling below. Wax seal failures are often caused by using a toilet plunger, really warm weather (the wax can melt), or the seals drying out after many years.

Other plumbing-related Edmonton ceiling leak causes include:

  • Burst pipes

  • Corrosion

  • Broken fixtures

  • Faulty seals

Common Water Line Types in Edmonton

If you had water lines installed in Edmonton before 1990, you likely have copper or galvanized steel. In modern constructions, many lines have been upgraded to high-quality PEX. But to understand the different types and their characteristics better, our expert plumbers have made a list for you:


This is a material that was typically used before the 1990s. Copper can last anywhere from 70 to 80 years. It’s resistant to corrosion and good with high temperatures. While extremely durable, it never hurts to have it inspected now and then. Copper lines are still popular today because they help protect water quality.

Galvanized Steel

Steel is durable but has a shorter lifespan than copper; it lasts between 40 to 50 years. Galvanized steel water lines haven’t been used in Edmonton for a long time, and any that are still in use are usually so corroded on the inside that very little water can flow through them. They are also usually quite brittle, so repairs are very difficult if not impossible, often requiring a full replacement when issues arise. For these reasons, they are no longer common in modern construction.


PEX stands for cross-linked polyethylene and has similar characteristics to PVC that prevent rust and corrosion from affecting your plumbing. It’s another common choice for modern homes in Edmonton because it’s an affordable and flexible tubing system that is easy to install behind walls, ceilings, and basements. It handles high water pressure well.


Poly-B or Polybutylene was used in the 1990s for residential water lines. After some time it was determined that Poly-B was susceptible to degradation from exposure to UV light, however, that degradation often showed up later in its life in the form of a leak. Poly-B is one of those things that should be replaced as soon as possible before it causes water damage due to a leak. If you have a 1990s home in Edmonton, check to see if you have gray or black water lines, if you do you’ve got Poly-B.

Every Edmonton home has a unique plumbing system with specific requirements. The different pros and cons of each material are important aspects to bear in mind when you need to replace parts of your system because of damage that caused a ceiling leak. Edmonton, AB homeowners that know what their system can and can’t handle will be able to better avoid problems in the future—and identify early warning signs that they need repairs.

The Aftermath of a Ceiling Leak in Edmonton, AB

Not all ceiling leaks in Edmonton are the same. You could experience a minor leak caused by a loose supply line, but there are many other potential problems that could cause a ceiling leak. Whether you have a burst pipe, corrosion, or uncontrolled high-pressure water, it’s important to act fast when you first notice signs of concern. When you hire a plumber to investigate a ceiling leak in Edmonton, it’s important to remember that it may be necessary to cut away damaged areas—or other parts of your walls or ceiling—in order to investigate and repair damage hidden behind your wall.

Once fixed, if the damaged area is small, you can air it out or use a fan to dry it. But if you find yourself staring at a damaged spot after a major ceiling leak, you most likely want to plan a ceiling repair. Water damage would have weakened and damaged your drywall or plaster. In order to avoid further complications, it must be removed with help from an Edmonton home repair professional.

Ceiling Leak: Edmonton AB’s Frequently Asked Questions

It’s common to have questions about issues causing moisture damage in your home. After all, it’s an unpleasant scenario that’s often made more frustrating because it takes time to determine where the leak comes from exactly. We have collected some of the frequently asked questions from customers who have experienced these mishaps or want preventative measures so that you can get the answers you need.

Do Plumbers Fix Roofs?

Plumbers do not generally provide roof repairs. While they specialize in drainage and plumbing systems, that doesn’t mean they won’t be able to help identify the source of your problem. Your local plumbing company may even be able to recommend a team to help fix roofing damage so that you don’t have to worry about tracking down another professional.

Why is My Ceiling Leaking After a Shower?

If you have a shower on the upper level and experience a ceiling leak on the lower level, there are five possible common culprits: Water line leaks, damaged bathroom tile or caulk, damaged shower faucets or valves, clogged drains, or a leaking drain. If you’re suffering from a ceiling leak below your shower, a plumber can inspect your water line, drain pipes, and shower fixture to determine the cause.

Is an Edmonton Ceiling Leak an Emergency?

It is an emergency if it gets to the point where the ceiling is sagging. That means there is a lot of water up there and it will be coming down soon. That is rare, so a ceiling leak is usually not an emergency. However, we do still recommend getting a professional in to fix it as soon as possible to prevent mold growth, mildew, rot, and other property damage in your home.

Smaller leaks you are aware of and have taken control of would be considered minor, but you should still call a licensed plumber to investigate the issue and make sure that it has been fixed correctly.

How Much Does it Cost to Repair a Ceiling Leak in Edmonton?

The cost depends on what is causing the leak, as there are usually many possible culprits. To completely resolve the situation, you’ll have to consider both the costs of Edmonton plumbing repairs as well as property repair services. At Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Edmonton, we are transparent with our pricing and never charge any overtime fees. We’ll always provide an honest, upfront estimate before we begin.

Need a Plumber to Stop Your Edmonton Ceiling Leak?

Call the pros at Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Edmonton to get the job done! We have the tools to stop your ceiling leak, as well as the expertise to examine your plumbing system thoroughly. Our team of highly trained professionals brings years of experience working on various projects. We are certified and licensed, ready to troubleshoot many problems—from burst pipes to a clog deep within your main drain. Not only do we provide excellent workmanship, but we also pride ourselves on delivering outstanding customer service to our clients in Edmonton and nearby areas, such as Aspen Gardens and St. Albert.

Give us a call to chat with our friendly customer service reps and ask how we can help to enhance your plumbing system to ensure you’re in a safe environment.