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Does your flat roof leak and needs immediate repair? If so, this flat roof repair guide is for you! This roof repair guide will help you understand your options, as well as explain how to do an emergency roof repair yourself. You will learn basic flat roof repair techniques to fix a Rubber Roof or Tar & Gravel flat roof. You will find “how-to” roof repair videos and references to more details, and step by step do-it-yourself (DIY) roof repair articles. We will also explain the true costs of roof repair – not just what a roofing contractor will charge to fix your roof, but additional costs incurred after the roof patch leaks. As a result, you may have to spend more money on another flat roof repair, as well as interior repairs to your house.
Before you spend your money on the wrong stuff, consider all your options listed below:
What you should do when your flat roof leaks:
First of all, you should put up buckets to collect water, so the leak does not cause more damage than is already done. Once the dripping water is not causing any more damage to the interior, consider the following steps:
Step 1) If your roof is fairly new – call the roofing company that installed your roof and have them fix it.
Step 2) If it is an older roof, or the original installer will not fix it for some reason, you have three options:
- Fix the roof yourself
- Have a roof repair performed by a roofing contractor specializing in flat roofs
- Or if your roof is near the end of its life, it is best to replace it rather then throw any more money away on repairing it.
Step 3) To prevent more damages to your roof, interior of your home, or the inventory and the equipment of your business, it is a good idea to put up a tarp on you roof, until you choose a course of action – either fixing a roof yourself or choosing a roofing contractor to repair or replace your roof.
Step 4) Estimate the real cost to a repair flat roof. Learn what is involved, what the hidden costs and fees are, and why we consider flat roof repair to be “sunk cost”. This comparison will help you decide if it is time to finally replace your flat roof, or if repair is a feasible option.
Flat rubber roof repair in progress:
NOTE: If your rubber roof is leaking, we are offering Rubber Roof Repair services in MA, RI and CT. We can usually fix your EPDM rubber roof during the first roof inspection / repair visit. Some rubber roofs can be repaired, and you can extend the life of your roof by few years for a relatively low price.
DIY Flat Roof Repair guides
Due to a wide scope of flat roofing materials and different roof problems that cause leaks, it is virtually impossible to cover everything that is related to flat roof repair in one article. For your convenience, we have several DIY roof repair guides for a specific flat roof type and specific repair methods. These guides are easy to follow, and are aimed at both home and business owners.
DIY Rubber roof repair guides
The first guide is for homeowners with EPDM rubber roof leaks. There are essentially two methods of rubber roof repair, or rather two types of flashing materials that are used to repair a rubber roof. First is the older splice adhesive method (black rubber glue) applied directly to the rubber membrane. Second is a newer / better Peel & Stick method, which provides faster and better adhesion and lasts longer.
- Rubber roof repair – our original article about fixing EPDM rubber membrane roofs using “black glue” or rubber seams adhesive.
- EPDM Rubber peel & stick repair – Part II of rubber roof repair guide, which concentrates on the more advanced and efficient way to fix rubber roofs using EPDM primer, Peel & Stick flashing, and Seam tape instead of just using rubber glue.
DIY Rubber Roof Repair Video – learn how to repair EPDM rubber roofs:
The biggest issue for homeowners with DIY rubber roof repair is actually obtaining the EPDM roofing materials, which are usually sold only through distribution, and only to roofing contractors.
If you are a homeowner looking to buy Rubber Roofing supplies, such as: uncured flashing material, cover tape, seam tape, roof cleaner, primer, etc., it is best if you contact local roofers and buy those roofing materials and flashing from them. Roofing contractors may also sell you a piece of rubber membrane, which you would otherwise have to buy as a 1000 sq. ft. roll.
Identifying and repairing a leaky roof:
DIY Tar & Gravel roof repair:
Repairing a Tar and Gravel roof is simpler than fixing a rubber roof. All you really need to do is clean the leaking spot, apply tar, reinforcing mesh, and put gravel over your patch. The biggest problem will be finding the roof leak. Unlike the rubber roof, where it is easy to find a separated seam or flashing, tar roofs are covered with loose gravel, and you do not actually see any holes in the roof. Check out the Tar roof repair video below. For more information on locating and fixing a roof leak, check out the Tar Roof repair guide (a link is posted after the video).
DIY Tar & Gravel Roof Repair Video:
- Tar & Gravel roof repair – learn how to detect and repair leaks in your Built-up or Tar-and-gravel roof, using inexpensive supplies from Home Depot, Lowe’s and other Home improvement stores.
What you should know about Flat Roof Repair before you spend any money.
Flat roof reality check: roof leaks are an inevitable outcome for 99% of flat roofs in service today. If you have a flat roof, chances are that it is already leaking or will begin to leak soon, even if your roof is fairly new and was installed within 5-10 years.
This article is an overview of issues related to flat roof leaks. In the article, we review the cost of flat roof repair, actions you should take to get your flat roof fixed, as well as an outlook of what will happen after your roof is fixed.
The purpose of this Flat Roof Repair Guide is to help you avoid the costly mistakes that many home and business owners make when their roof leaks, and also to help you choose the best solution for your particular roof and your budget.
Note: Due to a wide variety of different flat roofing technologies, this article cannot cover all aspects of flat roof repair. For specific DIY ways to repair your flat roof, please refer to our EPDM Rubber Roof repair, and Tar roof repair how-to articles.
End Part 1 – continue reading part 2 of this flat roof repair guide:
Continue reading this article – Flat Roof Repair Part 2, which discusses steps you should take, when your flat roof begins to leak, how to minimize the damages from these leaks, and look into TRUE cost of flat roof repair.
Note: we cut the original Flat Roof Repair guide into two parts, because it was pushing 4000 words, and was difficult to read even for me, even though I wrote it – do read the second part as it is crucial to tackling flat roof leaks with minimal damages and financial investment / loss.
Written by Leo - roofer with a vision. Follow Leo on Google+
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