As a Dallas, Texas area homeowner, it is wise to comprehend what goes into a leaking roof repair. Hurricanes threaten our homes every year and surprise storms popping up every so often, your roof is the first and last defense for keeping nature out. When a leak appears on your roof, the real problems are just beginning.
A leaking roof may result in expensive water damage, and mold can grow, which may threaten the health of your family and pets. Leaky roofs also reduce your home’s value, which isn’t beneficial if you are trying to sell.
If you have never tried to fix a leaky roof before, it would help to have some information about how to fix a leaky roof from the experts. Here are some tips from the moving experts to fix a leaky roof. Refer back to this the next time you notice water stains on your walls, a sure sign that you have a hole in your roof.
If you plan to replace your roof next year, you might be tempted to put off fixing that leak for just one more year. However, even a small leak can cause big problems pretty soon. If all that moisture gets in, it could destroy your framing and sheathing. The insulation could get completely ruined. This will cause your energy costs to rise. In addition to this, you may damage your ceiling, so it will leak indoors as well as out the next time it rains. The best way to deal with the problem is to fix it immediately, the moment you notice your roof leaking.
Before you repair your roof leak, you should first locate where it is at. A good place to start is to look at your roof uphill from the stains. Look for areas where objects, such as tree branches, pass through the shingles. Leaks in areas of the roof with some shingles are the most typical form. Conversely, it is rare to find leaks where there are no shingles. Even if you have an old roof, a leak shouldn’t form until something pokes through it, allowing moisture in. Even things like penetrations can compromise your plumbing and even affect your roof vents and chimneys. If you have an attic, go up there and check for the moisture source with a flashlight. You will notice wetness or mold. If you don’t have any attic space or the ceiling is vaulted, you’ll need to go on the roof to check for the leak directly.
If you’ve gone around the entire house on your roof and attic to look for leaks, and you still haven’t found the culprit, it may be time to get a buddy. Get him or her to go inside the home and look for drips of water. Meanwhile, you take your garden hose up on the roof. Start just below where the leak appears inside the house and soak the areas just above the spot before moving higher. When washing the sides of the chimney, you may want to isolate which side you attack. For instance, you may want to soak the downhill side first, then the top, and both sides. Your helper should shout the minute he or she notices the first signs of dripping water. It is going to take time. As soon as the area of the leak has been isolated, start removing roofing shingles from the suspect portion of the roof. It is possible that after the shingles are gone, you will be able to track the source of the leak. You might see stained felt paper or gnawed on wood directly below and around the leak. You can then fix the issue before closing it up.
Homeowners who have shingles that appear curled due to moisture leaks can reseal them by brushing them with a coat of roofing cement. A considerable amount of roofing cement should be spread under the shingles to hold the edges and corners secure. After this, the shingles should be pressed on firmly to set the cement and lock them into place.
When looking for leaks on your roof, look for shingles that are rotten, cracked, or totally missing. These will all need to be replaced. Start by carefully removing the nails holding the shingles in place with a pry bar. Lift the edges of the shingles to remove them in one piece. After scraping the old cement from the roof and removing any protruding nails, round the back corners with a utility knife before replacing the new shingle. The shingle is easy to slide under the shingles above it, so you can align it with the ones to either side. The first time the shingle is in place, lift the edges of the overlapping shingles and fasten the top of the replacement shingle with 6d galvanized roofing nails. First, drive nails through the plywood in each corner and seal the heads with roofing cement, then smooth down the overlapping edges.
If metal flashing is causing leaks in your dormers or chimney, you will need to reseal the joints using a caulk gun filled with roof cement. If you notice any damage to the joints, I recommend slathering on fresh cement with a putty knife to keep moisture out. If you find that an entire row of shingles needs to be replaced, or if they are a little too weak to hold on to the top of the roof, you may have to hire a professional roofing contractor to repair the damage and provide you with a long-term option.
You will have to also check your plumbing vents and roof vents in order to determine if water is leaking from any of those areas. Check for leaks or cracks or broken seams in the rubber or the metal.The roof could leak in the future if the rubber gasket surrounding the vent piping is rotten. These leaks will need to be fixed. Make sure you use washer-head roofing screws to secure the base of the boot to the roof. Replace the vent boot as needed. If the boot has a good condition but the fasteners seem to be missing, replace them with washer-head roofing screws.
Look for small holes that must be sealed due to old vents, or tiny nail holes that were neglected to be filled, or in the case of satellite dish brackets, for example. This superficial damage may cause small leaks that destroy the roof after years of exposure. This can be prevented by slipping a piece of roof flashing underneath the shingle. By inserting a bead of caulking or roof cement on the top and bottom edges of the flashing, it will be secured into place.
You may need to clean your gutters if your leaky roof continues. Grab a ladder and thick gardening gloves, and start pulling out any debris that may be causing clogs. You may also wish to trim branches that overhang your gutters and roof to keep them free of leaves and other debris.
Places, where water can drip down from the dormer walls, is one issue; another is that the caulking could be cracked or missing between the corner boards and between the siding and the window edging. Moisture can seep into these cracks and work its way behind the flashing and into the house. Even caulk that seems to be intact may not be sufficiently bonded to either the adjoining surface or the flashing. Start digging around the area with a putty knife to determine that everything is tight. Then, remove any suspect caulk, and replace it with quality caulk. Make sure you check the siding above the step flashing and replace any rotted, cracked or missing siding. When replacing the siding, ensure new pieces overlap the step flashing by at least two inches. However, if your roof still leaks, remove the corner boards and check the overlapping flashing at the corner. You should be aware of the old caulk which extends from the overlapping flashings at the corners.
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