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Roof Leaks in Ski Country

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
This isn't directly related to skiing but it involves house maintenance while living in ski country.
We have a second story deck out of our master bedroom. The deck has pulled away from the house, just a bit, when the cold hit. This created a small crack where the deck connects to the house. Because of the crack we now have a leak.

We have snow and rain forecasted until tomorrow.

Does anyone know how to plug a leak while it is still wet, will caulking work while it is wet?

Kind of an emergency, any responses welcome.

I have a call into the roofers and they are apparently bogged down.
post #2 of 21
I think you have a larger problem than "just" a leak. The deck is not going to pull away without real good reason! In this case---good reason is not going to be good news!

I believe there are some caulks out there that can be used in standing water---and even if they don't stay put forever---they might stay long enough for a more permenant fix.

You might also try some flashing installed under the lowest siding board above the leak and deck surface to try to deflect water away.

If intended to be short term---you could probably get away with just kind of wedging under the siding without nailing .
post #3 of 21
A product called WET STICK comes in caulk tubes and works well, wet or dry. The material (like soft black roofing cement) in the tubes won't fill large cracks though, without packing them first. Available HD & and builders supplies.
post #4 of 21
Yup, Wet Stick is the way to go if you've got a relatively small hole and something good to bond to. Low-tech approach: hair dryer and silicone. Dry the area as best as you can, that may mean waiting until most of the water dripping has frozen, and then applying silicone and more heat.
post #5 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone. Will make a trip to Home Depot this afternoon.
post #6 of 21
look for foam strip to fill gaps, there is stuff out there sold just for that purpose, to fill in the larger cracks before caulking. usually found near the caulking. or real cheap alternative is a length of closed cell foam pipe insulation (about 2 bucks for 8 feet) scissors cuts the stuff really easily.
post #7 of 21
I was going to suggest some expanding foam insulation might work also. Ive never used it on a wet surface but I'm sure it would do better than conventional latex caulk.
post #8 of 21
Buy a gallon can of Henrys roof mastic.You can apply it wet or dry. Make sure to heat up the can to room temperature or it will be to thick to spread easily.Also grab a few free wooden paint stir sticks to apply the mastic. I make lots of roof penetrations in my job and this is the standard way of sealing them.
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier_j
look for foam strip to fill gaps, there is stuff out there sold just for that purpose, to fill in the larger cracks before caulking. usually found near the caulking. or real cheap alternative is a length of closed cell foam pipe insulation (about 2 bucks for 8 feet) scissors cuts the stuff really easily.

The purpose-made foam strips are called backer rod. They come in a variety of sizes to match the size gap being filled. They're sometimes sold next to the cement patching products if not next to the caulking products.
post #10 of 21
Lag bolt it back to the house first....or once you fill it with goo you may be in worse shape than you are now.
post #11 of 21
Thread Starter 
Went to Home Depot, very frustrating. They do not carry Wet Stick at the Park City Home Depot.

I finally found someone who knew what he was talking about at the Pros Desk. He set me up with some flashing, caulk, and tape. I caulked up any crack I could find, jammed the flashing up under the siding, taped the bottom of the bugger to the deck, and it seems to be working.

Scheduled a guy to come out tomorrow.
post #12 of 21
The ledger board should be flashed sionce some separation is inevitable. There's a more serious issue though. Deflection of the deck joists under load will exert a lateral reaction upon the ledger board. It should be bolted to something substantial in the house such a rim joists and or blocking at a minimum in order to prevent the ledger from pulling away and eventually collapsing under load. I suspect many builders nail these things onto the house and that there have been collapses and injuries resulting. Perhaps the builder reasons that the nails should be sufficient to deal with the vertical load but neglects to consider that the board will pull out partially over time and that vertical load from a group of people partying, say, upon the nails will cause them to bend and lead to pull out and deck collapse. I'm not holding myself out as an expert here but I suspect that many structural engineers would agree with me.
post #13 of 21
Good post oisin

The nails actually begin to pull as the band board/rim joist (different names locally) begins to dry and shrink...the process begins as the board hits the wall...

It is now code in this area that all decks be Thru-bolted with 5/8 bolts every 32"....for retro fitting they are accepting 5/8 lag bolts every 16" so you don't have to rip ceilings out. Be sure if you are lag bolting to go just far enough to get through whatever you are bolting into...or there is a good chance of hitting some of the house's wiring...
post #14 of 21
Thread Starter 
Half of the deck is directly over the house, the living room, the other half is sticking out over the yard. So I would imagine there is enough support.

I know almost nothing about building homes but I can't help but think the original builder cut some corners and the previous owner didn't put much time or money into maintenance. We have only been in the house for six months so this is our first winter in it.
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by okolepuka
Half of the deck is directly over the house, the living room, the other half is sticking out over the yard. So I would imagine there is enough support.

I know almost nothing about building homes but I can't help but think the original builder cut some corners and the previous owner didn't put much time or money into maintenance.
Ah, I was wondering how you got to the "roof" leak part. It really is on a roof eh?
post #16 of 21
Can you post some pictures?
post #17 of 21
Thread Starter 
I don't have a digital camera or a scanner.
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by okolepuka
I don't have a digital camera or a scanner.
I have been a building contractor for 35 years. I can help you. P.M. me if you would like and i'll see what we can do ok?
post #19 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier_j
Ah, I was wondering how you got to the "roof" leak part. It really is on a roof eh?
J, I'm guessing that part of the deck is built over a room below. It probably has a rubber membrane material between the deck materials.

The deck is supported by "sleepers" on the roofing materials.

Sounds like the material where the deck is attached to the house has pulled away due to expansion/contraction or wasn't properly attached to begin with.
Some kind of lag bolts or screws into wall studs or the rim joist.

I could tell if I could see it.
post #20 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lars
I have been a building contractor for 35 years. I can help you. P.M. me if you would like and i'll see what we can do ok?
Thanks Lars, I appreciate the offer. A contractor was supposed to come by earlier in the week but never showed up. Anyone know any good contractors, or repairmen, in the Park City area? Referrals would be appreciated. Amazing that no one showed up and I called his company twice, I have never understood that about people. I guess they don't need business, must be nice.
post #21 of 21
Go to a local hardware store, preferably one that has been there awhile, and ask for names of good contractors. That's how I found my electrician.
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