A roof is an essential aspect of your home. However, harsh weather conditions can damage it. As a homeowner, having a damaged roof can be distressing and hazardous. If your budget does not allow you to hire a roofing contractor, it is advisable to handle some roof repairs on your own.
However, before you go ahead with repairing your roof, you should remember that some problems may be complicated than they seem. Thus, if you do not know how to carry out the repair activities, it isimperative to consult a professional. If you decide to go the DIY route, it is important to adhere to the safety regulations. Here are various roof repairs that you can easily do by yourself:
1. Gutter Repairs
Gutters are part of your roof even though many homeowners separate them from their home roofing system. If your walls and landscape are damaged by rainwater, you should inspect the condition of your gutters. It is important to check if they are clogged. Debris and dry leaves may block them, hindering rainwater from flowing efficiently.
If you spot lots of granules packed in your gutters, you should clear them instantly. Also, check if brackets are well secured to the fascia and fasten any loose screws. If your problem is water drips behind the gutter, the issue could be a wobbly gutter apron. Ensure it is in place and fastened.
A loose sealant can cause gutter leaks. Remove the worn-out sealant and reinforce every gutter connection with a quality seam sealer. Make sure the gutter area you want to seal is dry before applying the seam seal. That way, you will have a reinforced connection, and your sealer can last longer.
2. Shingle Repairs
Although re-roofing or fixing new shingles might need a professional roofer, you can replace a few missing, curled, worn-out, or warped shingles by yourself. However, you must have the right knowledge to avoid making mistakes that may lead to further costly damages.
First, remove the remains of your old shingles. Handle each by the edge, and carefully pull the fasteners off the struts. Clean any debris on the space you intend to repair. Use a knife to round the new shingle to allow ease placement and proper alignment. Once the shingle is correctly lined up, fasten it to the batten using roofing nails. Make sure you cover the nails with a seal to avoid water leakage.
3. Flat Roof Repairs
Flat roofs tend to accumulate pools of water during rainy seasons. However, their membrane structure material combats this problem partially. Thus, leaks are a common problem in buildings fitted with a flat roofing system.If you are experiencing leakages, you should inspect and repair your flat roof on a sunny day to avoid inconveniences when it rains. Make sure there is no water, tree branches or debris in the areas being repaired. Ensure you drain any water that may be trapped between the felt and blistered layer.Once the area is completely dry, you can now seal the openings with a thick layer of roofing cement. You should reinforce the cut edges to the new re-roofing material using strong nails. To make the coating even, cover the nails with more roofing cement.
4. Repairing Open Valley Flashings
Flashings can be distressing, but you can repair them on your own. However, they are hard to locate. If you spot an open valley flashing, inspect the joint right above your head. Once you pinpoint the rupture, you should clean it with a brush. Create a buffer zone with a piece of metal wider than the hole.
Ensure the sheet of metal you are using to patch the opening is of the same material as your roof structure. If you use different metal materials, your patch will eventually corrode, causing major flashing issues. After placing the sheet, apply a thick layer of cement and press it to ensure the hole is fully covered. To protect your patch, reinforce its edges by applying more roofing cement.
5. Metal Flashing Repairs
This is a common issue experienced by homeowners. Such issues tend to appear on exterior walls, chimney, vents, or skylights. Thus, ensure you inspect these spots regularly during spring. It is not advisable to wait until you experience leaks. Such issues happen when the mortar holding the bricks starts to fall apart.
How do you fix this issue?
Start by removing flashing from your chimney structure. Be careful when pulling out the loose flashing to ensure you don’t rip it from the brick wall. Use a chisel to remove mortar flakes. Clean away any debris that may be on the joints. Make sure you have protective gear when handling these repairs.
Once cleaned, you should use water to wet the joints and spread cement mortar around it. After filling it with mortar, you can carefully insert back your flashing. Ensure it fits firmly into its socket. Give the patched area time to dry up completely before applying caulk on the sides of your flashing joints and over its cap. You can apply the same approach when repairing metal flashings on your vents or skylights.
6. Roof Batten Repairs
Battens, also known as roofing lath, are used to anchor your roof shingles or tiles. Battens will keep your roof in position. A sagging roof is an indication you have a battening problem. This happens when your battens are rotten and cannot hold your roof weight.
Such an issue is common with wooden roofing lathes, and that is where there is an introduction of metal, plastic, and fiberglass battens. They last longer than wood battens, and you will have fewer issues with your roofing system.
To resolve batten issues, ensure you check if your roof is leaking. Inspect your battens often and replace them as soon as you suspect an underlying issue. Place battens on both sides to allow sufficient flow of air (use counter-batten system). If your roof is fitted with wood battens, you may need to upgrade to probably metal battens.
These informative tips from our friends who are roofers in Windham Maine will help you handle the above roofing issues on your own. However, make sure you wear safety gear and use the appropriate tools to do the job. Never climb on a sagging roof. Additionally, always use a steady ladder to access higher heights. Schedule your roofing repairs during dry seasons unless when unavoidable. It is imperative to get a professional roofer for all your major and complicated roofing problems.