We were on our Roof in the middle of the night during a massive thunderstom. Wind was whipping, lightening was striking and we were laying out half a dozen plastic drop cloths on our leaky roof. OH what Fun ...
Thus, begins our VERY leaky roof story in May 2008. Yet, we should start with a bit of a backstory ...
We moved into our home in 1989. At this time, the whole house had been completely re-done, including the roof. It was a new tar and gravel roof (lifetime usually 15 years). We were extremely lucky that nary a drop of water came thru for 18 years.
In 2007, our roof began to leak -- not much. My husband found the places it was leaking and patched them with an expandable tar product (not sure of its name). These roof patches seemed to work out well. We KNEW we needed a new roof, yet we did NOT have the money estimated at around $12,000+.
Even if you do not have the money for a new roof, most of us have something else: imagination and the internet to research alternatives.
In May 2008, our lack of a new roof gave us a big "GOTCHA"
One evening in May 2008, we began experiencing a MAJOR thunderstorm with high winds, downpours, and lightening. This is normal, we actually live in one of the so-called lightening capitals of the world. Yet, most storms only last a 1/2 hour or so and move one. This one did not. The storm was HUGE.
After about an hour of this raging Mother Nature, I noticed that nasty "dripping" sound. If you have ever had a leaky roof, you'll know what I mean.
Looking into our living room, I was flabbergasted to see water running down the front wall -- literally, a sheet of water! I quickly ran and got our old towels to sop it up, yet it was hopeless. We had at least 3 inches of water on the floor at the bottom of the front wall and in our front closet.
The time was about 11:30 PM. My husband jumped in the car and went to our local WalMart which luckily is open 24/7. He purchased about half a dozen plastic drop clothes and raced back home.
We both climbed a ladder to our roof and attempted to unfold and spread the drop cloths along the front of house. Remember, we have a tar and gravel roof just slightly pitched, so we could grab a handful of gravel to throw on top of the plastic drop cloth. Plus, with the roof so wet, as soon as we got the drop cloths spread out, they adhered to the roof well.
We were doing all of this with the wind and rain raging and lightening striking quite close by. It was exciting, yet NOT something we would EVER want to do again!
Once the drop cloths were placed, we climbed down from the roof and went inside -- the leak(s) had been stopped -- for now.
We then moved the furniture and pulled up the carpet. We had excessive damage. Luckily, the front closet was receiving the water from run off -- not from a leak (our house isn't exactly level). We also had water an inch deep in the room (our office) next to the living room from run off, which damaged the bottom of our desk.
So, that was the beginning of really fixing our roof. The only thing I would recommend for anyone with a slightly leaky roof is to keep Plastic Drop Cloths ON HAND, so you don't have to race to a local WalMart in the middle of the night.
You can get eco-friendly drop cloths pretty cheap ...
Trimaco 04401/18 2 mil Eco Drop Plastic Dropcloth
Trimaco's Eco drop biodegradable plastic drop cloth offers the same dependable performance as conventional plastic drop cloths. Well suited for projects that require quality protection from paint spills, drips and dust. This green advanced drop cloth not only helps to protect floors, furniture and appliances from damage, but also helps to protect the environment.
Or regular drop cloths even cheaper ...
Premier Paint Roller 69730 Plastic Drop Cloth, 9-Feet by 12-Feet, 3-Pack
List Price: $8.99
Sale Price: $3.62
This drop cloth provides convenient opening & spreading, superior Protection & versatility for painting projects.
NEXT, we will post Fixing a VERY Leaky Roof Part TWO ...