If you have a leaky roof, you’ll want to figure out where it’s coming from as soon as possible. But if you’re not sure what some of the causes of leaky roofs are, that can be difficult. 

In a previous article, we described a few of the most common causes of leaky roofs, including ice dams, improperly installed skylights, damaged shingles, and more. One of the causes listed there just might be your culprit. 

However, there is one cause we didn’t mention there: a damaged pipe boot — an instance that’s not quite as likely, but still common enough to not be written off. Below, we’ll discuss what pipe boots are, how they can contribute to roof leaks, and how to identify and resolve the issue before the damage gets too bad. 

What Is a Roof Pipe Boot? 

Every house has vent pipes that run from the kitchen and bathrooms up to the roof. They help regulate the air pressure in a home’s plumbing system. When air is allowed in, it helps ensure that water flows smoothly throughout drain pipes. 

A pipe boot is a metal or rubber cover that wraps around the area where a vent pipe protrudes from a roof. It seals the section of the roof around the pipe so that water and debris are prevented from leaking through any gaps and infiltrating underneath your roof. 

Pipe boots are also commonly referred to as vent pipe boots, vent pipe covers, and pipe boot flashings

The Most Common Cause of Roof Pipe Boot Damage

Most often, weather changes are to be blamed for pipe boot damage. As conditions transition between hot and cold throughout the year, your roof naturally contracts and expands. This movement can cause your pipe boot to crack or pull apart from your roof. 

Pipe boots can also wear out over time from exposure to the sun or extreme weather. Depending on the material, they can develop rust spots, which also cause issues in performance. 

In any case, a damaged boot will allow water and debris to enter underneath your roof and into your home. If not attended to quickly, that can turn into quite the hassle: a leaky roof and lots of costly damage. 

How to Identify a Damaged Roof Pipe Boot 

So how can you ensure that you catch your leaky roof caused by a damaged pipe boot right away? Understand the common signs to help identify the issue. 

Here are three of the telltale signs that your roof may be leaky due to a damaged pipe boot: 

  • Cracked or peeling wallpaper or paint on the ceilings and walls of your kitchen
  • Cracked or peeling wallpaper or paint on the ceilings and walls of your bathroom(s)
  • Damaged shingles around your roof’s pipe boots
  • Water marks on ceilings or walls (often looks like a light brown puddle)


If you notice any of these signs, call a roofing contractor as soon as possible. They’ll be able to confirm the cause of your leaky roof, then repair it before the water damage becomes too costly. 

Repair Your Pipe Boot & Leaky Roof with Werner Roofing

Have a leaky roof? Werner Roofing can help you identify the cause of it — whether that be a damaged pipe boot or something completely different. Then we’ll get it fixed before any further damage is done, helping you achieve a comfortable home, peace of mind, and a few cost savings. Give our team a call at (616) 844-5382 or contact us online for more information.

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