A roof leak always seems to happen at the most inconvenient time. It’s winter; you’ve just spent loads on a new boiler; or, you had a new roof replacement a few years ago and shouldn’t need another one for at least seven more. No one wants to deal with a leaky roof, but it is vital to do so and quickly. Otherwise, you could be facing worse structural damage on top of a waterfall on your family’s heads during dinner. A leaky roof should never be ignored. If left unrepaired, the safety of your family is at risk, since there are certain factors that cause a leaky roof, and they could be dangerous.
Keep reading to learn the best methods to repair a leaky roof.
1) Hire a Reputable Roofing Company…
If you want a roof to match your home perfectly and seamlessly, your best bet is to hire a reputable roofing company. With these companies, you have options. You can find a company specializing in roofs only, or you can work with a siding contractor in Minneapolis or wherever you are. Roofing contractors often are available for emergency call-outs. With the right company, you can get more than repairs. You also can request custom solutions suitable for your home and budget.
2) …Or Gear Up
If you find yourself frantically trying to fix a leak but don’t have the time or funds to hire a contractor, you may need to fix it yourself. In this situation, you’ll need to prepare thoroughly, or you could put yourself in a dangerous situation. Your first step is to ensure your roof isn’t covered with snow, water, or something else that would cause you to injure yourself.
Check for any large or irregular objects that could be causing the leak. For example, if you see a tree branch brushing up against the roof, then you may need to call for the services of an arborist. A small tree branch may cause more problems in the future.
As soon as it is bright, sunny, and dry outside, you will get the green light to proceed with your repair. Equip yourself with the right safety gear, such as rubber sole shoes and harnesses, to protect you from slips and falls. Working with other people to spot you is also a smart step to take.
3) Spray It
If you can’t find or see the source of a leak, a great tip is to take a garden hose and spray water on the roof. This method may locate the source. The only downside to this is that if it is wintertime, it would be too dangerous. Wait until it’s dry and hot to use this tip.
4) Prevent Dry Rot
If your roof is not getting proper ventilation, dry rot can occur. If damage to your roof occurs right in the center, then that could be a sign the plywood is deteriorating. This rot can lead to more significant problems, like the roof caving in or roof shingles cracking and causing a leak. If there is a soffit vent available, then you can prevent any dry rot by installing a ridge vent. Make sure to drill holes through these soffit vents so that cold air can filter and push hot air through the top.
5) Fix Roof Boots
Skylights, roofing, and ice damping can all be reasons for roof leaks. However, a source of leaks that people often miss is rubber boots. Roof boots are where the fence of the roof comes up. By allowing these to dry up, significant leaks can happen. By purchasing new roof boots from a hardware store, you can fix any potential issues quickly. Note that you may have to replace some of the shingles to install better tar.
As you replace the shingles, it’s also a good idea to assess the condition of the entire roof. Perhaps there are other problematic areas, beyond the ones you can see. Tiles usually need to be removed and checked for cracks or leaks. Next, you need to look at the nails that penetrated the shingles or tiles and remove these. This will allow you to put the right type of roofing materials in place.
A part of this process also involves inspecting the underlayment. Most likely, you’ll also need to assess the insulation condition of your roof, or else, you’ll be losing heat come wintertime. Make sure that the right amount of insulation is used since too little will not only be ineffective but also useless.
Once you’ve inspected this area, you’ll need to choose the right type of replacement, from asphalt, tiles, shingles, or better yet, a soffit system. A soffit is an important feature that protects building elements from exposure and deterioration while keeping their visual appeal.
6) Always Inspect Materials
Even after nailing down all the shingles, some of them may crack due to their faultiness. Incorrect installation of shingles can also play a significant role in roof leaks. Even if nails are installed too low, they can cause the roof to push back up. By just taking a good look at a shingle before installation, you may notice something you didn’t before. Always inspect your materials before you install anything to prevent issues.
Moreover, check the drains and vents to make sure they’re functioning properly. It’s important to ensure that there are no damp areas where water can accumulate, such as where the roofing stops on windowsills and doorsteps. Otherwise, these areas can also get damaged.
Maintain Your Roof
Maintaining your roof regularly and inspecting any materials before installing can prevent any significant issues or leaks before they happen. By preventing common issues like dry rot or roof boots, you can save a lot of money in repairs on your roof. If all else fails, however, it would be your best bet to hire a reputable roofing company for your needs. Professionals can diagnose and repair the problem quickly and safely.