leaking roof !

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Sanzu08, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. Sanzu08 macrumors member

    Sanzu08

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #1
    okay we are actually having monsoon conditions in London at the moment and wouldn't you know it my roof has sprung a couple of leaks :(

    I'm totally broke at the moment and can't afford to get a roofer in.

    Luckily I have easy access to the roof through a skylight, so I'm gonna see about fix it myself.

    Has anyone seen in good online guides/resources about fixing roof leaks ???


    thanks
     
  2. glocke12 macrumors 6502a

    glocke12

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2008
    #2
    one quick fix is to caulk the heck out of the area where you think it is leaking...
     
  3. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    #3
    We get leaks during heavy storms, so about 3 times a year where I live. Our house is shaped like an L and the leaks appear in between both the poking out bits. Every year we mean to look into how bad it is in the attic but we never fix it :eek:
     
  4. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    #4
    duct tape.. you can fix anything with it. :p

    seriously though, use some roof caulking or some other kind of sealer on there.
     
  5. Sanzu08 thread starter macrumors member

    Sanzu08

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #5
    thanks !

    Yep, need to get some caulking, but was wondering what types are best on different parts of the roof, and best ways to prepares the surfaces etc...
     
  6. Dimwhit macrumors 68000

    Dimwhit

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #6
    What kind of roof do you have? I don't know what is standard in London. Is it an asphalt shingle roof? What is the underlying roof made of? Plywood sheets?

    Fixing it right can be cheap and fairly easy, but it all depends on how the roof is built.
     
  7. Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    Location:
    Communard de Londres
  8. Sanzu08 thread starter macrumors member

    Sanzu08

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #8
    yep, its a slate roof, but it has a sort of trough running down the centre, from back to front at the house - i.e. its a 'V' shape.
    then at the front there's a sort brick parapet

    I'm pretty sure (though I can't go up on the roof till it stops raining and is dry) the is a hole in the lead flashing that runs along the trough in the centre

    plus where the gutter runs long the roof at the back of the house there is some sort of leak and i can see a damp patch coming through the wall..

    difficult to explain!
     
  9. gonyr macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2006
    Location:
    Niagara County, NY
    #9
    Whatever you do, don't ignore it, fix it as soon as possible. You don't want to get involved with mold problems because of the leak.
     
  10. Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    Location:
    Communard de Londres
    #10
    Sounds like a valley roof,it's fairly unlikely to be the flashing but possible. Get up there when it's dry and take a careful look,avoiding doing more damage while your at it. Keep in mind water may be getting in some considerable distance from where it appears to be on the inside.It's most likely slipped or broken slates.Take a lot of time thinking before doing anything and be aware that most quick fixes will only lead to a more expensive repair down the road.Google slate roof repair for some hints.
     
  11. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2002
    Location:
    Republic of Ukistan
    #11
    It is, as Peterkro says, a valley roof, otherwise known as a "London roof" or a "butterfly roof". This will have the enormous advantage of being totally safe to work on, as you can't fall off the edge, you don't need a ladder, and you can get up there through a trapdoor. The leak is probably just a slipped or broken slate or a hole in the lead or zinc lining to the valley gutter. If it's a slate, buy a couple of "Eternit" artificial slates from a builders' merchant and push it or them up under the damaged slate. You can also get a mastic gun and a cartridge of black gutter sealant to seal the crack. If it's the gutter, you have more of a problem, but you can use the mastic to seal the damage for the moment, after cleaning the area thoroughly, or, if it's a split, buy some 50mm wide "Flashband" and stick it over the damage (using gentle heat from a hair-drier will help to soften the bitumen on the back so it sticks better).
     
  12. Sanzu08 thread starter macrumors member

    Sanzu08

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #12

    Many thanks to everyone for the posts.

    It is indeed a 'London roof" - if it ever does stop raining i shall follow your advice!
     
  13. Sanzu08 thread starter macrumors member

    Sanzu08

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #13
    OKay, though I'd give an update on how the work went.

    1st leak - middle of the ceiling
    This - fingers crossed - turn out to be straight forward. I found a crack in the lead valley that runs down the centre of the roof. Fixed it with flash band which went down very easily, and the later I ran mastic all around the edges of the flash band to be certain it was sealed.

    2nd leak coming through the wall/ceiling above my window
    This is much more of a problem. Because I'm on the top floor (in effect 4th floor) I can reach this outside be a ladder, and because of the way the sloping roofs narrow at this point it very difficult to inspect when you are on the roof, but from what I could see there was no sign the gutter was blocked.

    By opening up my window I can - to a certain extent - inspect the guttering and brickwork. The guttering is firmly in place and I can't see any obvious problem. I ran mastic underneath where the guttering butted against the wall and also coat the wall with a liquid used to seal brickwork against damp. However I'm not at all confident that this will solve the problem

    It maybe that because there was exceptional rain when this leak showed up (i was away at this point) that it just overwhelmed the gutter and came down the wall. Next time it rains I'll watch what happens.

    I've attached some images of look towards where the problem area from the roof and also from inside the room. Any other ideas what might be causing the problem????


    pics here:
    http://gallery.me.com/mj.hall#100018&bgcolor=black&view=grid
     
  14. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2002
    Location:
    Republic of Ukistan
    #14
    Presumably the gutter drains into a hopper head, although the downpipe is obviously not in front of the window. Where is your window in relation to the downpipe?
     
  15. Sanzu08 thread starter macrumors member

    Sanzu08

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #15
    the down pipe - as i look out of the window - is to the left, going down the corner of the house. when standing on the roof, from what I can see it is clear, although it's impossible to reach it and, as I say its too high up to get to with a ladder.

    the guttering itself looks in reasonable condition - not coming away from the wall etc.
     
  16. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2002
    Location:
    Republic of Ukistan
    #16
    So the valley gutter discharges into another gutter which runs across the back of the house? In very heavy rain the amount of water running off the roof into the secondary gutter could easily overwhelm it in that case. If it only happens in exceptional rain, I doubt if there's much you can do beyond replacing the 100mm (4") secondary gutter with a high-capacity 150mm (6") one, but that's going to cost you. You may have to resign yourself to regular redecoration...
     
  17. Sanzu08 thread starter macrumors member

    Sanzu08

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #17
    the valley is in the middle of the house and empties into a horizontal gutter that runs to the corner of the house which is where the downpipe carries the water away.

    the two damp patches are either side of the valley, about a foot apart - rest of the wall is fine. So that makes me think that when there was exception rain fall the water spilled straight over and down the wall.

    all of which means that I think your are right, the only real solution woudl be to replace the guttering - but thats something I just can't afford at the moment.

    my hope is that atleast the sealant will give the brickwork some protection and in a couple of years I might be able to afford to the guttering replaced.

    thanks for the replies
     

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