The Right Way to Fix a Leaky Roof
Are you wondering how you can fix your leaky roof? While it’s possible to fix the leak yourself, it’s important to keep in mind that experienced roofers are more familiar with safely getting on and off your roof. One wrong step could mean serious injury. We’ve also seen plenty of homeowners (or amateur roofers) who have “fixed” the leak, only to create a bigger problem. They end up calling us anyway, and by then it is more costly to fix.
Keeping this in mind, a leaky roof is usually caused by missing or cracked shingles or shakes, fractured or blistered areas on flat roofs, or any other kind of localized damage. Usually, locating the source of the leak is the hardest part of fixing it.
Take a look at our guide to fixing a vulnerable roof the right way.
- Find the roof leak
Since the water that breaks through the ceiling travels from an original entry point, finding the source of a leak is the most important thing to do. Also, it’s the most troublesome because the source of the breach and the signs of a leak are often separated. So, grab a flashlight and go up into the attic during the day to inspect your roof. Begin from the place where the leak penetrated the ceiling and start looking for signs of mold, discoloration, dampness, and water damage on the support beams. Turn the flashlight off to see if any daylight is shining through the cracks or holes. Once you find it, it’s time for some repair work.
- Fixing a leaky shingle roof
For repairing a leaky shingle roof, you’ll need some roofing adhesive, roofing nails, a crowbar or pry bar, and replacement shingles. After you’ve identified a damaged shingle, lift it by hand, remove the old nails, and lift the shingle with a crowbar or pry bar. Slide the replacement shingle into position (if it fits the shape and length) and fasten it with a hammer and roofing nails. Apply some adhesive to the heads of every nail and press the shingle down firmly.
- Fixing a leaky tile roof
When it comes to tile roofs, you will need some roofing nails (or tile clip), a crowbar or pry bar, and a hammer, as well as a clear roofing sealant or a replacement tile. If the tile is only cracked – lift it carefully, apply some roofing sealant to the area beneath it, place it back into position, and then apply more sealant on the top. If the tile needs to be replaced, use a crowbar or a pry bar to lift it above the damaged area to remove it. If that’s not possible, smash it with the hammer and pick up the pieces. Place the replacement tile, secure it with a roofing nail or a tile clip, and remove the crowbar/pry bar to let it slide into its place.
- Fixing a leaky asphalt flat roof
The tools you will need to fix a flat asphalt roof are – a flat roof roller, scissors, a paintbrush, and a patching kit and primer. Clean the damaged area from debris and apply a coat of primer about 10cm in every direction from the damaged area. Let it dry, cut the patching material the way you need it, and apply to the area. Use the flat room roller to smooth the stuff out.
How to Prevent Roof Leaks
Replacing or repairing a roof can be expensive and time-consuming. Taking preventative measures is the best way to extend the lifespan of your roof. Hire a roofing professional to maintain your roof and perform repairs that you can’t carry out yourself. Inspect your roof regularly for cracks, clean it, and do a roof tune-up every five years. Shumaker Roofing is a roofing expert with more than seven decades of experience. Give us a call right away if you noticed a leak that needs to be fixed!