Trouble Shooting


Like it or not, there are occasions when roofs leak. When this occurs with a metal roof, careful analysis must be given to the situation in order to find and repair the problem.


In some cases with metal roofing, water may enter through an incorrect flashing or other improper installation area and then run or be channeled along beneath the roof panels until it finds an opening to enter the structure. This can make troubleshooting more difficult.


In some cases, the source of leaks is very obvious and repairs can easily be made. Knowing under what conditions the roof is leaking can be helpful. Is it leaking in all rains or only heavy rains? In only wind-driven rains? Only with ice and snow? In troubleshooting a leak, look at all flashings and sealants. If sealant has broken away or cracked and led to a leak, investigate how that area can be re-flashed without dependence on sealant. Make sure that the roof pitch is appropriate for the product that is installed. Look for areas, such as dead valleys and various roof protrusions, that might trap water. Ensure that the valley is an “open-style” so that it is not clogged with debris. Make sure that the ridge is installed properly. This is particularly critical on products that use individual ridge caps (see Technical Bulletin #20). Look at pipe flashings and make sure that they are in good condition and properly installed. If the leak is still elusive, make certain that the water infiltration is not actually coming from a wall, window, or masonry item such as a chimney. In some cases, tarping suspect walls or chimneys off from the weather can verify whether they are the source of the leak. Water test the roof as necessary both before and after repairs but keep in mind that water sprayed form a hose cannot accurately simulate actual weather conditions. Also, be sure to contact the manufacturer of the roofing and solicit their experience and knowledge in sourcing the leak.