Basic Flat Roof Leak Repair in Simple Terms
The simple fact is that at some point in everyone’s life we will all have to contend with a roof leak, and the resulting roof repair job. There’s just no getting around it, even if one doesn’t have to do the actual work themselves. After all, most roofing contractors do repair work.
What About Roof Repair for the Do it Yourselfer?
But what about if your roof springs a leak, and you either don’t have the money to hire a professional, or are simply unwilling to pay their high fee? In this case, if you don’t know someone who’s willing to climb up on your roof for you, you’re going to have to do the work yourself.
Step One is to Find the Leak
So step one, is to find the leak, and you may be surprised by how far water can travel once it finds its way through a crack in the roof. You see, the felt or tar paper is three feet wide, and the plywood that the building is sheeted with comes in 4 x 8 sheets.
Water Can Travel Under a Flat Roof
What this means, is that the water stain on your ceiling can be as much as 11 feet from where the actual leak is. Now 11 feet is definitely on the extreme end, but just the same, you can expect to locate a leak on a flat roof at least a few feet away from where the water is entering a building.
Pooling Water is Definitely Not Good
Another place to look for problems is low areas of a flat roof, where water is pooling after it rains. Often roof joists, or even trusses settle or warp to cause dips in a flat roof, and water that pools in them will eventually find its way through, unless it dries out.
The Old Stand-By Roof Patching Compound
So after you’ve located the source of your leak, the next step of course is to patch it, and today there is a huge range of products available for the task. Now there is the old stand-by plastic roof patching compound, and no doubt about it, but that it is effective. It’s even more effective if the roof patch is applied with fiberglass mesh in a three layer system that roofers call “three-coursing”.
Amazing EPDM Liquid Rubber
Still yet, if a building owner has a little more money to spend, there are several EPDM products available that not only do a much better job of patching roof leaks, but they also last longer. EPDM liquid rubber for instance can be literally poured and rolled into low lying areas to form a water tight seal that will contain water for up to a year.