The Causes of a Sagging Ceiling Floor

Sarah DeWitt Ince

A sagging ceiling creates many concerns, especially if the damage is not fixed. A ceiling may only sag in certain areas or the entire ceiling may sag and look as though it's going to crash down.

A sagging ceiling floor must be addressed and repaired.

The causes vary and sometimes the repairs are simple, but in some cases the entire ceiling, beams and drywall need a full restoration.


Termites, water damage, leaks, earthquakes, undersized drywall and poor construction can cause a sagging ceiling. Termites eat through wood under the house, but they can also make their way into other structures of a home and disrupt the integrity of the house. Earthquakes and poor construction can also cause the ceiling to sag when the damage is drastic. Leaks from broken pipes, toilets, sinks and other appliances upstairs may result in a sagging ceiling if the water damage is severe. The water softens the wood and drywall which causes the ceiling to sag as time goes on.


If left alone, a sagging ceiling can cause safety and health hazards. If the damage was from water, pieces of drywall can eventually come crashing down on a person. Although it may also stay intact, it's still best to fix the ceiling as soon as possible. Sagging ceilings caused by water damage can also create a mold problem which can lead to respiratory problems, nose bleeds and poor health in general. Professionals should always fix sagging ceilings, especially if there is mold damage.

Prevention and Solutions

Prevent a sagging ceiling floor in the first place by hiring good licensed contractors to build your house. You can have an inspector check the house for possible leaks and order quick repairs before leaks turn into a problem. An older home may need new plumbing or support beams, especially if the home has termite damage. It's vital to check for termites periodically and eliminate them right away. If the house already has a sagging ceiling, a contractor can repair the damage by replacing the support beams and replacing the drywall. Sometimes the support beams are still stable, so contractors may only need to replace the drywall.

Other Concerns

Some insurance policies may cover the damage from a sagging ceiling, but it depends on the policy. Insurance companies may require that the ceiling actually collapse before they will cover the cost. Some policies will cover the cost without any questions asked, but coverage may depend on the cause. Sometimes homeowners end up paying a contractor to come in and fix the damage.