yesterday I noticed that the ceiling light fixture in the master
bedroom walk in closet closet was a bit dim. I thought it was one of
those lights fixtures that used two light bulbs so I unhooked the
light cover and popped it off. Inside the light fixture there was
about a cup or more of water.
I unhooked the light fixture and checked the electrical box and it was
dry. I checked the drywall around the light and it was dry.
Where did the water come from?
The light fixture is in a small walk in that is kept closed most of
the time. The fixture is in the center of the room and the ceiling is
shared with the attic. The light fixture is one of those cheap ones
where the light is a one piece globe that is held tightly against the
ceiling with a couple of clips. It uses one 60w bulb. It has been very
hot lately but I have had the air conditioner on for most of the
If you have a central air blower unit in the attic, it should have a pan
under it to catch condensate from the unit. Usually there is a float switch
attached to the pan, that will shut down the unit if the pan fills. There
should also be a pipe going from the unit to some outside location, to drain
the condensate. Look for an overfilled pan or a broken condensate pipe. Most
likely the insulation above the light fixture will still be wet. Try tracing
the origin of the water via the wet insulation
Hot, humid air in contact w/ a cold air return may be condensing on the
surface of a supply or return line and running along some path ending up
there in the light. If the unit happens to be installed in the attic
maybe the condensate drain line is plugged and the pan has overflowed.
Only two of many possibilities, but the water came from somewhere
outside the fixture...
Plumbing or roof leaks and A/C condensate are three of the most likely
sources of stray water in a residence...
The water may have leaked some time ago and the ceiling has since dried out,
but still water in the globe.
Do you use this light every day? Has it rained since the last time you used
Also is the air conditioning in the attic/roof? Or elsewhere?
"alex" wrote in message
Well, today we had a pretty good thunderstorm so I went into the
attic to look around,
The blown in insulation around the box was a bit moist. It looks like
the reason that the drywall around the box was not wet was because
between the drywall and the insulation is a layer of plastic sheet.
One of the joists near the box showed signs of dampness. It looks like
there is a wet spot on the roof between two sheets of 4' x 8'. There
was a bit of wetness there. I guess the water is dripping in there and
falling down onto the insulation.
I was hoping to delay the new roof until next year, guess I'll be
doing it this year.
Doesn't sound like too bad of a leak. You might get by slathering on some
I did that on a flat garage roof, trying to buy some time. That was over
five years ago and it hasn't leaked since.
Hey, look at this way- better to figure it out in August than in January,
when a thawing icedam on a sunny day drops enough water in there to bring
entire closet ceiling down. You got off pretty lucky, with only trivial
interior damage. Once roof is replaced, along with any compromised
insulation. (don't forget the bleach spray in attic), I'd change that
fixture out just for the hell of it. Corrosion isn't always obvious in the
socket, or where the tabs inside the socket attach to the wires. Closet
ceiling fixtures are cheap. If there is any slack in the feed wire to the
light, I'd strip an inch or two off to expose clean copper, if you see any
discoloration at all.
I put a 8 foot by 16" board underneath a leak I had, and put the end
of the board just above the soffitt screening, and put a box under the
other end so the drip ran down the board and went outside. Worked
pretty well I think, and what I should have done is used a wider
board, or made a ridge at the sides of it to keep the water from
falling off the sides. Or I could have used a sheet of vinyl stapled
to the rafters to make a funnel that would pour inthe soffitt
In other words, if you want to wait until next year, I'm sure you can.
Because of a tub that leaks occasionally (maybe when guests take
showers, I'm not sure.) I've had water in the globe on my ceiling
fixture. It has to run down a 3 foot chain to fill the globe. Once in
there, it will stay for months or years without evaporating, because
there is so little air circulation. I've made an effort to empty the
water before it reaches the 150 watt lightbulb. I'm afraid the water
will cause it to break, but I'm not sure.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.