If rain drops keep falling on your head when you’re standing in the kitchen, it’s time for some repair work. Once you’ve located the source of the leaks, here’s how to seal those roof leaks.
What You'll Need
Gather toolsYou’ll need:
- Through the ROOF!
- Utility knife for removing old caulk, opening the caulking tube, and cutting shingles to the right shape
- McKanica® Silicone Caulk Remover or similar product if silicone is present
- Matching shingles
- Caulk gun (for cartridges) or foam brushes (for brush-on grade)
- Trowels or foam brushes for tooling
- Mineral spirits for clean up
- Proper safety equipment to access the roof top
- A spy glass to take a quick look around the neighborhood, since you’ll be on the roof anyway
Find the leakIf it’s not obvious (like your skylight is dripping on you), you’ll have to dig a bit deeper. If you have attic access, the easiest way to track down a leak is to go up there with a flashlight and look for the evidence: water stains, black marks, mold, etc. If attic access is a problem or you have a vaulted ceiling, time for a trip to the rooftop. (Be careful!) Start by checking all roof penetrations (vents, boots, flashing, etc.) Still can’t find it? Time to contact a pro.
Clean the surfaces
Apply the caulk.Apply the bead at least 1/8” to 1/4” wide to ensure there’s enough there to both stick to the joint and stretch with movement. If applying the brush-on grade, apply between 1/8” to 1/4″ thick.
Smooth (tool) the bead
Clean upUse mineral spirits to clean up tools and surfaces.Now, test it. Find a friend who is a risk taker, then take a hose to the roof to see if your newly-sealed roof is truly leak-free. (We’re pretty sure you’ll still be friends because this stuff actually works.)