Water Damaged Ceiling

By | January 8, 2013

A Guide to Cleanup and Repairing Your Damaged Ceiling

A water damaged ceiling is perhaps the most dangerous effect that a water disaster can have on your home. Water damage can compromise the structural integrity of your ceiling, which is an especially important part of your home.

A weakened ceiling can lead to many possible dangerous scenarios; small holes can become larger when neglected, the ceiling may get warped or may sag, or worse, it may cave in completely.

water damaged ceiling

Several water damage causes can target the ceiling particularly. In a single storey house, the ceiling can be damaged by a leaking roof or a broken water pipe. In a two-storey house, the damage may be caused by a leaking shower or toilet on the second floor, which means that the water drips down onto the ceiling of the first floor. But regardless of the cause, the important thing is to pay immediate attention to any water damage on ceiling to prevent the problem from getting worse.

Step by Step Guide to Repairing Water Damaged Ceiling 

Step 1: Identify the cause. The first symptom of a water damaged ceiling is a stain on the ceiling, usually of a yellowish or brownish color. Sagging is also a sure sign of a compromised ceiling. Both signs point to water damage, even when no water seems to be dripping off the ceiling.

water damaged ceiling

Once you notice any of these signs, the first thing to do is identify the cause of the problem and to put a stop to it immediately to control the damage. For example, if it’s a leaking pipe, you have to turn off the water source.

Step 2: Attend to the root problem. Before you start repairing the water damaged ceiling, make sure to completely resolve the root problem first. Otherwise, you will still risk damaging your newly repaired ceiling if the problem comes up again.

Step 3: Measure the damaged area. After making sure that the cause of the water damage on the ceiling has been corrected, you then have to remove the part of the ceiling affected by the damage. Do this by measuring the damaged section and putting pencils marks around it to mark the areas where you need to cut.

Always cut a squared area, making sure that all sides are the same length and width. This is safer and will also make it easier for you to measure the replacement you will install. If you catch the problem on time, the area will surely be relatively small and the work required will be easier. The most important thing to remember before removing the damaged part of the ceiling is to secure the area around it with screws to keep it stable.

Step 4: Cut out the damaged part. Cutting out is a complicated step in the process, and this may require different materials and different skills depending on the type of ceiling you have.

water damaged ceiling, damaged drywall

The most common type is the drywall. In repairing water damaged drywall, you will need some safety glasses and a dust mask because you will meet a lot of dust and other small loose particles when you start cutting. Also, make sure you have a drywall knife so you can cut out the area lightly before sawing it off to make the task easier.

Step 5: Pay special attention to water damaged wood. Repairing water damaged wood is an important yet easily overlooked step in water damage ceiling repair. Usually, ceilings have wooden supports. Unfortunately, wood is extremely vulnerable to water. The greatest danger is for mold and mildew to develop in it.

To make sure any mold or mildew will be eliminated and to prevent their future growth, you need to treat the wood with an effective mold killer after you have removed the damaged ceiling. After that, leave the area to dry before installing the new section of the ceiling.

Step 6: Prepare the new section you will install. Take out your excess drywall supply or order a new one, which should be similar to the old one you used. Measure and cut out the new section of drywall.

Step 7: Install the new drywall section. Position your ladder directly below the damaged area. Make sure to bring along four drywall screws, a drywall tape, and a drill when you climb up. Hold the new section of drywall in place where it should be, then start putting a screw on all four corners.

Then take the drywall tape and cut it out to the length of each side of the replaced drywall section. Put drywall tape on all four sides and top it with a drywall compound. Use a knife to spread the compound evenly; make sure all the edges are covered. Drywall compound usually takes overnight to dry.

The next day, you still need to apply another coating of the compound, and again, you need to leave it to dry. Once dry, get a drywall sandpaper to sand the area off before painting it the same color as the rest of your ceiling.

DIY or Professional Water Damage Repair Service – Making the Decision

Although the step by step guide makes water damaged ceiling repair seem quite manageable, the process does require care, preparation, and skill. Since different homeowners have different levels of knowledge, skills, and abilities in doing home repairs, not all people can repair a water damaged ceiling on their own. So if you feel like the task seems impossible for you, don’t hesitate to hire a contractor to do the job.

A professional water damage emergency service offers various types of water damage services. They don’t just offer repair for flooded homes; they can give you specialized services focused only on ceiling repairs. Aside from having expertise, they also have experience plus the necessary equipment to do the job right and as efficiently as possible.

Final Reminders for Fixing Water Damaged Ceilings 


A DIY water damage repair on a ceiling is certainly less costly, but if you have absolutely no idea of doing any form of repair around the house or if the damage is so severe, then you risk causing more harm than good to your ceiling and even to your house as a whole. Thus, your own efforts may lead to costlier consequences than when you simply hire professional water damage repair services.

And remember, when faced with a water damaged ceiling, you need to act quickly. The longer you wait, the costlier your water damaged ceiling repair will be. For leading manufacturers and distributors of snow retention systems for most roof types, visit rockymountainsnowguards.com