Flashing Magic!

October 26th, 2015

Oh NO!  Look up, Ma!  The Ceiling is Leaking!

leaking_roofWhen a leak occurs in your house, it’s a crisis! Buckets are set out, and sometimes Good Ole Uncle Jim is called for advice because, everyone in the family knows that Uncle Jim built a couple houses a while back. He’s the family expert. He’s the guy who knows how to use a hammer (and he’s also the guy whose other favorite other tool is duct tape!)

If Uncle Jim is really “good,” the first thing he will check is the flashings around walls, pipes sticking through the roof (penetrations), and around the chimney. check all penetrations into the roof including snow guards and the solar mounting used on your solar panels. If your roof has lots of valleys, dormers, or “cut-up” sections (which designers love because it adds interest to the overall look of the building), there is a good chance that is where the leak is coming from. Even with a straight gable roof (roof with just two sides and a ridgeline), you can have leaks that are NOT caused by a worn out or faulty roofing product.

The flashings in these areas might have worn out or might not have been installed properly. Let’s face it, when you bought the house did you even look up? Roofing isn’t the most interesting issue when buying a house, right?  And sometimes flashings are installed unprofessionally, or corners are cut to save money. Oftentimes no one realizes this until there is a leak.

Uncle Jim

Good Ole Uncle Jim

So, if you’ve got this issue, and there’s no Good Ole Uncle Jim around to help, think like a raindrop and see where you would flow.  (Hint – This is always down!)  Sometimes you’ll head for an obstruction rather than flowing right off the edge.  So check around penetrations, in the valleys, the walls that abut to the roof and locations where flashings are supposed to divert water from going under the roofing material. If these are cracked, loose, or just plain absent, it’s time to install new flashing.  Or do what smart Uncle Jims do. Use duct tape – roofer’s duct tape!

TRA Snow and Sun has something we like to call the “roofer’s duct tape” and it works like magic!

VersaFlash and TileSeal are flexible aluminum rolled flashing that attaches down with a butyl adhesive and is flexible. You can use it in areas like around roof-to-wall abutments, around chimneys and pretty much everywhere else. They work like magic as flashing for tile roofs! It’s super easy to work with and competitively priced.