Few things are more immediately distressing to a homeowner than a leaking roof, especially when rain is still coming down. You may not have ever needed to know how to stop a roof leak in the rain, but now you do.
Even if you can’t get on the roof, you may still control water damage by catching water in your attic.
- Putty knife
- Tape measure
- 6-mil polyethylene sheeting (clear or black plastic)
- Utility knife
- 4 pieces of 2 x 4 lumber, 4 feet long
- Staple gun
How to Stop a Roof Leak in the Rain Steps
- Enter your attic and inspect the area where the ceiling is wet.
- Remove wet insulation and sponge up water into a bucket.
- Set a piece of plywood or other boards across the ceiling joists beneath where water is dripping.
- Put the bucket on the board to catch water.
- Use your flashlight to examine the roof to locate exactly where water is coming in.
- Apply roofing tar to the leaking area with a putty knife.
- Stick a spare shingle or piece of plywood onto the roofing tar to build an emergency roof patch.
- Put more roofing tar around the patch to make it stay in place.
- Now take measurements inside the attic to determine where the leak is on the roof’s exterior.
- Measure vertically from the roof’s ridge down to the leak.
- Measure horizontally from the gable to the leak.
- If you’re willing and able to get on your roof, you may now build an emergency roof covering.
- Put on rubber-soled shoes and climb on to the roof.
- With the measuring tape, use the vertical and horizontal measurements obtained in the attic to find the leak’s approximate exterior position.
- Unroll enough 6-mil polyethylene sheeting to reach from the eave to the ridge plus 4 extra feet.
- Cut the piece with a utility knife.
- Unfold the cut piece of sheeting to reveal an 8-foot-wide strip.
- Roll one end of sheeting around a 2 x 4 and secure it with staples.
- Nail a second 2 x 4 over the first 2 x 4 to sandwich the plastic between the boards.
- On the roof, set the 2 x 4 plastic sandwich along the eave.
- Pull the remaining plastic over the leak and over the ridge.
- Sandwich the loose end of sheeting with 2 x 4 lumber to weigh it down.
PJ Fitzpatrick Can Help with Emergency Roof Repairs
After you succeed in building an emergency patch, you’ll need to arrange for a permanent roof patch. PJ Fitzpatrick has a roofing team ready to fix your roof as soon as possible. Ask us for an estimate today.