How to Make a Temporary Emergency Roof Repair to Protect Your Home

Having a roof leak on your home can cause all sorts of damage to the inside of your home as well as damage your home furnishings. Most roof leaks occur because of severe storms that damage the roof and then water leaks into the home. When that happens getting the roof repaired quickly can help to reduce a lot of the damage that may occur. Knowing how to make a temporary emergency roof repair for your home can help to reduce this damage. We’ll take a closer look at some things you will want to consider before you attempt this repair on your own.

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Before You Learn How to Make a Temporary Emergency Roof Repair, Find Out if You Really Need Emergency Roof Repair on Your Home’s Roof

When a roof starts to leak the water penetrates the roofing surface and makes it’s way to the attic of your home. At this point, the water will likely start to saturate the insulation of the home’s attic which can sometimes fall from the roofing surface.

When the water makes its way to the attic flooring it will then start to saturate the insulation that is in your home’s ceiling. And finally, the water will start to saturate the drywall on your ceiling which is usually the first indication to the home owner that there is a leak present in the home. Many times, by the time this happens the storm is over although the ceiling may show more and more damage even after it stops raining.

The saturated insulation is not leaking water onto the drywall which causes this damage. So even if you were able to put in an emergency roof repair on the roof the damage would still be present and the temporary roof repair would not help any.

Roof Damage from Debris

Another type of roof leak repair that you may need during an emergency roof situation is roof damage from fallen debris such as branches or trees. Storm damage can not only damage the roof itself but it can also throw other items at the roof. This type of damage can also affect a new roof. The affected area in this case is usually small however and the problem shows up right away.

Depending on how much of the roof was penetrated will determine if an emergency roof repair is something you need. Obviously a large tree which damages your roof badly will require immediate attention which small branches will exhibit the same behavior as the weather damaged roof we mentioned above.

For larger temporary emergency roof repair it’s always best to call a roofing contractor who has the materials such as tarps and plastic to cover larger areas of roofing. Most residential roofing companies will have people available to tarp your roof during an emergency situation until you can get your roofing systems checked and repaired.

So What Are the Initial Steps to Take When You Need an Emergency Roof Repair?

The first thing you should do is remove items that are under the area that is affected. If you have televisions or electronics that can be moved to another area of the home easily, it’s best to get them away from the roof leak. Some items may be too large or heavy to be moved, but moving smaller items to keep them from being damaged is advised.

You can also place large pots or buckets to start to catch water from the roof leak. If you have a multi level home this can prevent damage from reaching the lower levels of your home.

During the height of the storm if the roof has been damaged by a storm you’ll want to wait until it’s over before you try to assess any damages. This is especially true during a thunderstorm with lightening present.

Once you’ve assessed the damage to the roof of your home you can call a roofing contractor for an estimate on the cost of repairs. You’ll also want to take photos of the initial damages and any water damage that may be present to show your insurance company.

Know the Risks of Emergency Roof Repair

One of the more dangerous jobs is roofing. Even experienced and qualified roofers do have accidents where they fall from the roof and get injured. So before you decide to go on your home’s roof and look around, be aware of the dangers that are present.

The biggest threat to you going on the roof is falling from the roof or through it. Damaged roofing can be very unstable. Add in the fact that the roof may be wet and there may be moss or algae present and it’s just like walking on ice. Oh yea, not to mention, there may be ice present on your roof during winter storms.

Another way you can get injured is by power lines that are going to your home. Touching these powerlines can be fatal and avoided completely.

While doing emergency roof repairs to your home you may also damage the roof just by walking on it wrong. There are places that you should avoid when you’re on the roof and be especially careful especially if you have sheet metal used on the roof.

Also Check Out: Pros and Cons of Getting a Roof Over Your Existing Roof or Re-Roof

Protecting the Roof with a Tarp or Plastic

Once you’ve realized just how dangerous it is to put in a temporary emergency roof repair and still want to place the barrier, here’s how. First, you’ll need a large enough plastic tarp or piece of plastic that can reach the ridge of the area that is damaged. The barrier must reach the ridge of the affected area of the roof or water will be able to run underneath it.

You can attach the roofing barrier by rope that can be run down the roof to trees or some type of anchor point. You may want to tie the barrier to banisters, trees, or other items that are not easily moved. Make sure the barrier is tight enough that wind doesn’t get under the barrier and tries to lift it.

Once the barrier is in place it should be okay until you can get a professional roof inspection of the damages to determine whether a roof repair or roof replacement is needed. Sometimes only a simple repair with roofing cement is needed.

Also Check Out: Commercial Roofing Maintenance: Here’s How To Extend The Lifespan of Your Roof

Other Ways to Protect Your Home

If you don’t feel comfortable going on the roof and placing a temporary barrier there are other things that you can do to help protect your home. One of those ways is to place pots and buckets in the attic of your home. If the roof leak is small the buckets can trap the water before it starts to damage your home’s ceiling.

How Much Does Emergency Roof Repairs Cost?

The cost of emergency roof repairs can vary greatly. The biggest factor is the damage that is present on the roof. If a small repair is needed because of nail heads that may be causing problems the repairs will not cost much. There are different markets however which have more of an impact on roof repair costs.

Some contractors will charge a flat rate while installing an emergency roof barrier while others may charges based on miles driven, materials used, etc.. They may also have a flat fee which is added during weekends or evenings when you need roof repairs. It’s always best to call a roofing contractor and ask them before committing to any type of roofing or gutter repairs.

Rick Anderson

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