How do I temporarily fix my roof?

roof shingles damaged and leaving the decking exposed

What to do if the roof is leaking during a storm?

As the saying goes, April showers bring May flowers, they also leave leaking roofs behind too. One thing that every homeowner should have is an emergency roof repair kit, because, with the weather being unpredictable, you never know when you’ll need an emergency roof repair. Even though there are 24-hour emergency roof repair services around, if a storm has left you with a leaking roof, there are probably other leaking roofs too. That means those emergency roof repair services will be booked up.

One evening, you’re sitting on the couch, enjoying the fireplace glowing with the sound of a thunderstorm rumbling. The nice evening is ruined quickly when you notice a leak in the ceiling. What should you do? You should call a professional and schedule an emergency roof repair, but in the meantime, until they arrive, take the following steps:

  • Go to the attic and try to determine where the leak is. It could be around areas that have flashings, or it could be where shingles have been knocked loose or off. If your home has appliances in the attic, like the air conditioning unit or water heater, the leak could come from one of them.
  • Avert future damage from happening to the ceiling by placing a bucket, pan, or pot where the rain is coming in with a newspaper around it. If the newspaper gets wet, you’ll have a better idea of where the leak is coming from. Take pictures for this to show the roofing contractor and insurance company why you needed an emergency roof repair.
  • Establish how much damage has been done by the leak, taking pictures of the ceiling, cabinets, flooring, walls, and furniture.

You and your insurance company may determine a professional water restoration company that is needed. This needs to be done immediately to stop any further damage from happening. Until they arrive, place fans in the areas that are wet to help dry them out and keep mildew and mold from growing.

What can I use to seal a leaking roof?     

Even if you’re can learn how to make emergency roof repair, keep in mind that nobody can do the job as well as a professional roofing contractor. However, a professional roofer may not always be available for an emergency roof repair, knowing how to do temporary mend on a minor leak could save your home. We suggest the following steps by as recommended by professional roofers:

  • Check above the watermarks on the ceiling for roof damage. If you have not determined where the leak is coming from, trace the water damage from the attic, using a flashlight. Look for mold and water stains. Then go back inside the house and check the corresponding area inside your home.
  • Inspect for wear and tear. Look for cracked, curled, or missing shingles where the roof is leaking while evaluating the overall condition of your roof. If you notice several damaged or missing shingles, or wide gaps at the chimney and vents, or basic wear and tear.
  • Reattach & straighten curled loose shingles. As asphalt shingles age, they often start curling. Smooth those shingles and apply roof sealant with a caulking gun under the lifted corners. Then press those shingles down and smooth over the edges with a trowel and roof cement.

For broken, clean, cracked, or missing shingles, use roof sealant to repair and attach replacement shingles.  

What to do if water leaks through the ceiling?

One of the worse things that a homeowner can be confronted with is water damage in their house. If you are faced with a water-stained ceiling, or it is cracked and peeling, the following steps will stabilize the area around the leak for an emergency roof repair.

  • Steady the area around the leak, by making a small hole in the center of the leak with a screwdriver and place a bucket under it.  This allows any water in the ceiling out.  
  • Track down the leak by cutting a hole in the ceiling to see where the water is entering. Then allow the immediate and surrounding area to dry out.
  • Now it is time to repair the leak which may only take using a little spackle and paint or you may have to completely replace and repaint the entire ceiling.
water damage to a ceiling

Can I fix a roof leak from inside?

From the Attic

Once you’re in the attic, remove the insulation and gently soak up any standing water. After the area has dried, lay a piece of plywood over the ceiling joists and place a bucket under the leak.  

Finding the Leak

Find where the water is coming in then follow the path from where the drip was seen downstairs and where it is coming in the attic. Water follows gravity, usually down the rafters or decking.

Temporary Leak Patch

After the leak is located, create a temporary patch with either a sheet of plywood or shingles. Using a putty knife, spread roofing tar then place the wood or shingles on top of the tar. Next spread tar around the edges to seal. 

Can leaky roof collapse?

If a roof leak is left unaddressed with any type of temporary or permanent emergency roof repair, it can spread further and keep holding water. Water is heavy and the more water that sits in the attic, it puts stress on the ceiling beams and drywall, soaking into the insulation, with the roof collapsing soon to follow.

Any size of the roof leak should never be ignored. What starts as a small leak will grow over time. Causing more damage to your home. Having the materials on and for an emergency roof repair is always a smart game plan for any homeowner along with the number to a qualified roofing contractor that you can depend on and trust.  Dial (850) 566-6504 today for emergency roof repair in Tallahassee, FL from Folsom Roofing