Leaking Tar & Gravel roof

htraceyMay 5, 2011

Sorry for the repost, but I couldn't "edit" my subject for some reason.

We bought our old (100 year old) house 2 years ago. Its an up/down douplex, and the updatirs tennants have just moved out. We got 2 inches of rain last night and when my husband went upstairs to do some work, he noticed that the roof was leaking in the bathroom. I have no idea how long this has been happening or why they didn't tell us (I'm a bit irritated about that).

When we bought the house, we were told the roof was 8 years old, putting it at about 10 years now. Are leaks in a tar and gravel roof normal at this age? I thought they were a 20 year roof!

Is this repairable? Can we do the repairs ourselves. I read somewhere that once your tar & gravel roof starts leaking, the whole roof is pretty much done... I really hope that isn't the case...

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Built up flat roofs are just leaks waiting to happen.

The movement has been away from them and to things like EPDM membrane as longer lived and more reliable (Firestone makes a fortune).

Does the roof have ANY pitch?

Once water finds a path through a built up roof it can be a real chore to locate the leak.
The water can run many feet from the defect in one layer before finding a defect in another layer to continue entering.

Small repairs around vents and other holes in the roof for mechanicals can be worked on, but it can be hard in many cases to determine where the actual defect is.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2011 at 3:39PM
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We got into the attic and found where the leak is comming through the roof, but like you said the action leak in the tar&gravel might be somewhere else. We put a 4x6 tar patch over there the small leak is entering, and hopeing for the best. If that doesn't get it, we are going to have to hire someone.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2011 at 8:52PM
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