Tim the tool man here again bringing you another adventure in home improvement. This time offering a step by step guide for any do it yourself project when your home has an unexpected leak coming from the ceiling inside your house. One of the first thoughts when you first notice moisture, a water spot, of hear that dripping sound when ever it rains is that somewhere on your roof there just maybe a crack, a small hole where a roofing nail used to be or some missing caulk around the flashing around the roof vents. In any case trying to find just where that leak is coming from on your roof is like finding a needle in a haystack. In other words an impossible task to locate just where that crack or hole is on one’s roof.
There are many options to consider when one is faced in preventing further water damage inside one’s home due to a leaky roof. The most obvious one is the thought that the roof is old and it might be in need of a total replacement. That’s the most expensive option. One that will cost well over $5,000 or more depending on the square footage of your roof. For many of us especially us senior citizens living on Social Security that is not the option. The best chance to eliminate any leaks, protect home and at the same time if you happen to live in a warm climate such as Florida keep your interior cool on those extremely hot and humid days is to apply a silicone water proof barrier over the entire roof.
With the advent of today’s silicone roofing technologies they have come up with various sealants that would more affordable and more practical to apply directly on your roof instead of a total roof repair. Through due diligence and research on the many types of silicone sealers I recommend Eterna-Lote S-100. From all the recommendations there are this one is by far the best choice for any type of roof. You can order it online but, for sheer convince and cost Home Depot carries this brand. They say timing is everything for I was just fortunate enough to be at Home Depot when they had Eterna-Lote S-100 on sale. Originally a 5 gallon bucket would cost a little over $200 but it was marked down to $70. The square footage of my roof required two 5 gallon drums of this sealant. A far better price than had I opted to replace my roof. Besides there is a 50 year warranty. What a deal.
There really isn’t much to do once you have the necessary equipment needed to complete the task at hand in applying this sealant on your roof. 5 gallons covers just about 500 square feet no primer needed. What I recommend for a single story dwelling is an 8ft. ladder, and extendable roller handle with a paint roller designed for rough surfaces considering our roof is a rolled out shingled roof. Next you will need an empty 5 gallon bucket. Once you have these necessary tools application is easy to do.
One other word of caution is to check the weather forecast before applying. For best results your roof should be dry and free of any debris. If any rain is in the forecast wait until there is at least two days of warm dry weather before and after applying this sealant. What I did was wait until the weather was a balmy sunny 65 degrees. And in Florida during the winter months 65 degree days are quite common. I started with emptying 2 gallons of Eterna into the empty 5 gallon bucket giving me easy access to lift it up on to the roof. This is because I am not Hercules any longer and 5 gallons of this sealant weighs just about 100 lbs. So carrying that weight up my ladder would have been a considerable chore, to say the least.
Having a slow pitched A frame roof it is quite easy to move around without any safety lines. Just be careful when you come close to any edge. That is why having this extended roller handle came in handy. Starting in the back of he house I proceeded to roll this sealant covering the roof, easing my way toward the front. Two and a half gallons of sealant covered 1/4 of my roof surface. Four hours later exhausted from all the non stop application I finally finished. It was around 3:45 PM just about the time the instructions stated that” for best results do not apply after 4 PM.” All I had to do now was clean up.
Clean up is relatively easy Paint thinner is the best choice to clean your roller and any drops of sealant that just happened to splatter on yourself. I wasn’t so fortunate though I look down and my legs were splattered with sealant. I probably had more sealant on me than on some parts of my roof. Just kidding though. Anyway with a clean cloth and paint thinner I managed clean up what ever mess I made.
The moment of truth arrived to see how effective this roofing sealant really is two days latter. It was around two in the morning and rain started pouring down. Wind gusts exceeded 50 mph and for four hours driving rain pounded the roof. Somewhere during that time two large tree branches broke off landing just short of our outdoor kitchen just missing the roof. Through it all not a drop came through our ceiling. Our house was safe and dry.
So if you have a leak somewhere coming from your ceiling and you know it is not coming from an upstairs bathroom it could only come from a crack or leak somewhere on your roof. Instead of replacing your roof Tim the tool man recommends Eterna-kote S-100 ultra silicone sealant for your roofing repairs even if you happen to locate where that leak is coming from. It works. Tim the tool man signing off until the next time.