Roof repairs are needed for a range of problems, including damaged, loose, or missing shingles; rusting or loose guttering; and flashing failure. These problems are often caused by high winds or storm damage, failure to follow a regular maintenance schedule, poor installation, and general aging of the home. In many instances, a knowledgeable do-it-yourselfer can make some repairs, especially if safety or specialized expertise is not an issue.
Tools Used to Repair Roofs
Leaks are the most damaging problem and common faulty areas include chimneys, plumbing vents, and any point where two opposing materials meet. The various types of repairs will require a range of tools for correct installation and ease of access. To reach higher points on the slope, roof jacks may be the most important equipment choice as they support 2x4 lumber that provides secure footing. Additional tools should also be on hand for emergency repairs. These may include adhesives such as roof cement, duct tape, roofing felt, and tarpaulins. These will effectively create temporary protection over exposed wood decking, close rips in felting, and prevent leakage at critical roof junctions.
Flashing should be installed wherever two points converge; it serves to close the gap and deflect water. It is an easy-to-medium type repair, depending on the location. At the roof's base, most flashing can be accessed by a ladder. Venting points and chimneys may require more skill and should be repaired by a bonded professional who is accustomed to heights and roof slopes. Flashing is generally not as long lived as the materials it protects.
Guttering is the simplest roof repair to make. Preformed synthetic pieces are easy to assemble and snap into place. Older guttering that is in good shape is also a simple project. Routine inspections and cleaning will keep this type of repair from becoming more serious.
Other Types of Roofing Repairs
If only a few shakes or shingles are missing or damaged, replacement is fairly routine. Home improvement stores will sell most standard types in small quantities. However, clay tile and slate roof repair is a job for professionals. Hiring an experienced roofer will be the most cost-effective way to ensure replacement tiles match in both texture and color. An untrained contractor will likely damage more tiles in the process than those that required initial replacement. An experienced "slater" is the only person who should replace broken, cracked, or missing slates to maintain cosmetic integrity.