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Leaking roof

Posted by scal (My Page) on
Wed, Dec 24, 08 at 13:29

Hi,

We just noticed that after the last set of rains over the weekend( In San Diego), there were water stains at 3 places in the roof. This is the first time we saw stains, in the 10 yrs we have lived in this house. I have not taken a trip up to the roof yet, but have called someone to give us an estimate. Few questions for all of you:

1. How much does fixing a leak(s)cost? Some ballpark figures would help.

2. Can anyone recommend a Roofing company in San Diego/Poway area?

3. I was talking to someone else for getting the roof power cleaned. Would it be a good idea to have it cleaned first and then fix the leak or other way around? I am thinking of getting it cleaned first, as that might show some other vulnerable areas? Please share your view. Also, how much does a roof power washing job cost? It is a two storey 2100 sf house.

Regards
--Scal


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Leaking roof

You are better off getting estimates from outfits in your area. They will want to see the severity of the leaks and the potential problems on the roof itself. Get more than one estimate and like you have asked here, ask around for reputable roofers and check their references. I wouldn't power wash a shingle roof. If you have tile i think that would be okay, but ask a pro first.


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RE: Leaking roof

The problem with leaks is that they are horrendously horrible to pinpoint. Where the leak shows up inside may have nothing at all to do with where it came in, and rarely will you see obvious 'holes' from on top. So often it's about tiny places in flashing around the chimney, or winds blowing water up under some small area and then finding 4 diff. places inside where it's tracked to along joists, etc. in the attic. If your roof is relatively old (l5+) you may end up replacing rather than trying to chase down the leak(s), plus just tarring over even 'found' areas on top rarely lasts for any length of time (been there, done that, gave up and reroofed).


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RE: Leaking roof

I did take a look at one place on the roof today and found something that could potentially be the cause of one of the leaks. The other one I could not acess, but does seem to be close to the chimney.

Replacing looks like a big expense. How much does it cost, on average/sq ft, to put in a new roof?


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RE: Leaking roof

Again, get free estimates from reputable roofers in your area. They'll take a look and advise whether a repair or re-roof is neccessary in your case. Pricing differs by region so it's best to get accurate real world estimates from those who can see your project up close and personal. Roofing prices are typically run by the square. 1 square = 100 sq.ft. Those here can tell you what they paid which might or might not be close to what they charge in your area.


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RE: Leaking roof

I've never heard of power cleaning a roof. What would the purpose be? Is this a low or high slope roof? What is the roofing material? How are the penetrations flashed? Penetrations are always the first things to suspect therefore you or someone else must go up there and check it out.

There is no point in guessing. No one can tell you how to fix a roof without knowing precisely what the cause of the leak is much less be able to estimate the cost.


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RE: Leaking roof

Once a roof starts leaking you can easily spend thousands chasing leaks. The three you saw may be coming from one place or three different ones. Occasionally you can find the exact spot that is leaking and fix it. That is generally not the case. Once an older roof starts to leak it will continue to develop new leaks and after a few years you will have spent more than the cost of a new roof chasing leaks and still you will be chasing. Bite the bullet and replace the roof, it will be a lot less expensive in the long run.


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RE: Leaking roof

Mightyanvil,

I would think it is a low or medium slope roof. The roofing material is tile. I don't know how the penetrations are flashed. I will get someone this week from the roofing company to go up and check.

I have seen many people have their old roofs cleaned up and then sealed. It makes a big difference looks wise, especially given the two fires we had in the San Diego area over the last 4-5 years and the soot/algae that has collected over the roof. I talked to one dedicated cleaning company and they use hot water/steam to clean the roof/ side walls/driveways etc.

The other thing that I will have to factor into the decison for fixing the leak vs reroofing is that we hardly get any rain in this part of the country.

--scal


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RE: Leaking roof

With tile roofs, it's not the tiles that keep your roof dry, but the flashings/underlayment under them. First suspect would be flashed areas/roof protrusions. If you are careful who you choose to inspect by getting a reputable roofer, they will know where to look.


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explanation

Similar to a stucco or brick veneered wall, the underlayment/flashings/ drainage plane are the most important factors in keeping your roof sheathing dry, no leaks. The tile will shed the majority of rain water, but like stucco and brick veneered walls, moisture still collects under the tiles. The nailing strips are staggered and a 1" gap where the strips meet allows the moisture that is collected to run down and out by way of weep holes in the starter metal where typically the drip edge lies on the facia. Proper installs of the underlayment/flashings is crucial but like most materials, can eventually fail with age causing leaks.


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RE: Leaking roof

I got couple of estimates today for fixing the leak.

1. Company A will charge $1500 for relaying abdout 125 Square foot of roof space with double layer of roofing paper. As someone suggested, an actual point of leakage may be hard to pinpoint. For the first leak, they will relay the paper 2.5' on either side of the leak and go up about 15 feet (5 x15=75 sq ft), where, there is a joint that could be potential cause for leak. Other two leaks are around the chimney area and they will again relay 5' from roof edge, for about 10 feet (5x10=50). They will reflash the chimney also. The work is guaranteed for 3 yrs.

The second company (B) wanted to lay an 8 x 22 = 176 sqft area for the first patch, going right to the top of the roof and not taking any chances. For the Chimney also, they will lay paper for an 8 x 18 = 144 sqft area, again going to the top of the roof. They will also do reflashing for the chimney and guarantee the work for 10 yrs. The cost is $2200. (about $ 5.5 /sqft).

I talked about the option of new roof and both companies were of the opinion that roof is only about 15 yrs old and hence need not be changed. Anyway, the cost would be about 12-15K for company A and abour 10-12K for company B.

Even though company B is charging me more, I feel that the logic of going up all the way to the top of the roof is probably a better option. What do you guys think? Is the rate reasonable? Also, the company B guy mentioned that they will round up total area of 320 sqft to 400 and charge me for that? Is that normal? If so, I am thinking about going 7 x22 instead of 8 x 22 and get charged for 300 sqft instead.

Thanks
-scal


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RE: Leaking roof

I would get a couple of more estimates - nothing to lose, and you learn something each time from the company, if only that eg. one starts to sound less and less worthwhile, and/or another sounds better and better. I agree with Shadetree Bob that a new roof is cheaper in the end than chasing leaks, and 15 years is not that young (whichever one of your guys told you that it is). They may well be looking for future customers in terms of getting hired to keep chasing new leaks vs just doing the job once and for all. Of course if you can find out who did the roof to begin with, and if there is still an existing warranty on it, you might have a deal waiting!


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RE: Leaking roof

The o.p has a tile roof. The tile is not what needs attention or replaced,(with the exception of broken tiles), it's the underlayment. Possibly it might be a case where the tiles will need to be pulled up,(tile is easily removed), and new underlayments/flashings replaced. Replacing the tile would be assnine and if any roofer tells her they need a whole new roof, they will be dupping them.


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RE: Leaking roof

Sierraeast,

Both the estimates above are for re-using the same tile and only replace ones that are broken. Does the estimate sound reasonable?

Thanks
--Scal


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RE: Leaking roof

Hi Scal, Even though i grew up there, i wouldn't know San Diego rates. Roofers tend to stay close with one anothrer as a rule, but it wouldn't hurt to get more estimates. I agree with you that the second bidder, even though more money, sounds more thorough by going up to the ridge with the underlayment. The phrase "not taking any chances" is a good staement from them. Without seeing your project, i would estimate 16-20 hours depending on crew size for the second bidders effort, which doesn't sound too extreme ,imo. You have to take in consider any trades persons overhead along with insurances, licensing, workmans comp for hired help, etc. Tool wear and gas for the vehicles all tie into every job. Im impressed with the 10 yr. warranty but be sure to get everything in writing, make sure they are licensed, bonded, and insured. Best of luck and have a great new year!


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RE: Leaking roof

Minor roofing problems can be mended without the help of a professional roofing contractor.


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