While flat roofs offer a unique aesthetic, they don’t drain water as well as sloped roofs. This means if you have a leak, it’s important to address it quickly. Today, many flat roofs are made from a rubberized material. In this how-to, our roof repair experts explain how to locate a leak and how to fix it.
What you’ll need to fix a flat roof:
- Measuring tape
- Rubber sealant
- Putty knife
- Utility knife
- Roofing cement
- Galvanized roofing nails
Locate the Leak
- From inside, locate the leak.
- Next, use a measuring tape to measure the distance between the leak and the two nearest walls.
- After that, set up your ladder against your home and climb up to your roof.
- Use the measurements you took to locate a general area of where the roof leak may be.
- Look for imperfections in the roofing material that may be causing the entrance of water.
- If you can’t find anything in the material, examine the nearby flashing, vent caulking, vent pipe boots, and other structures.
Repair the Damage
- Once you’ve located the leak, make sure the area is dried thoroughly.
- If you have a hole or puncture, apply rubber sealant to the area.
- Use a small putty knife to work the sealant into the hole or puncture and let it dry completely.
- If your roof has a membrane blister, use a utility knife to cut the blister all the way across. (Make sure you don’t go deeper than you need to.)
- Next, use a towel to dry the area underneath the blister.
- Once the area is dry, apply a thick coat of roofing cement to the underside of the blister edges.
- Next, press down firmly to close the blister.
- To make sure the blister is completely sealed, drive several galvanized roofing nails into it to permanently close it.
- After that, apply roofing cement over the nails and use your putty knife to spread evenly.
- If your roof has a large rip or tear, we suggest contacting the roof repair experts at P.J. Fitzpatrick. We can repair your roof properly so you can stop your water damage from becoming worse.