When you have a major roof leak, you will probably notice if water is pouring through your ceiling. But not all roof leaks are major, and it is possible to have a leaking roof and you may not immediately even realize it. Any type of leak, whether big or small, needs to be repaired promptly. If you're a homeowner, look for these common signs that your roof is leaking:

Wet Insulation in the Attic

Many homeowners do not inspect their attics often, which is a mistake. The condition of your attic can tell you a lot about the health of your roof. Make it a point to check out your attic on a regular basis and inspect the insulation. If the insulation is wet or shows signs of water stains, that is often an indication that your roof is letting water in. You should also take the time to look up at your roof while in the attic -- if you can see any cracks in the roof letting light in, there is a good chance that it leaks when it rains.

Stains on Ceilings and Walls

When a leak is not immediately noticed and repaired, water can soak into the ceiling and the walls. These water spots often look like rings with brown or darkened edges. Be diligent about examining the ceilings in each room in your home. It is also important to inspect corners where walls meet the roof to look for any signs of water damage that is caused by a leaking roof.

Mold or Algae Growth on Roof

If you notice that algae or mold is growing between the shingles of your roof, it is most likely because water is seeping in and the shingles are no longer able to keep water out. Don't make the mistakes of just having the mold or algae cleaned and removed -- it is important to have your roof fully inspected by an experienced roofer, since if water is getting between the shingles, you may have a leak somewhere that needs to be repaired.

Damaged Flashing

Flashing is roofing material that is used around chimneys and roof joints to seal them and keep water out. If your flashing is damaged, these areas will no longer be waterproof, and the roof can begin leaking. It is a good idea to visually inspect the flashing on your roof -- if you see any signs of damage, contact a residential roofer. 

Visit websites like http://www.us-roofing.com to learn more.