Sunday, March 8, 2015

the further adventures of shop repair

I finished re-caulking the two windows in the big bay area of the shop last Friday, inside and out, the work I had started on the previous Wednesday until it started to rain. While I was working on the outside I could see that all the old caulking around the frame of the windows is dried out and cracked. Will need to re-do that as well. I just wonder if I really need to scrape out all the old stuff or if I can just go over it with new stuff. Since I had the 8' ladder out I checked out the top of the walls where they meet the 3” or 4” overhang of the roof. I hesitate to call it an eave. Some of the metal is rusty on the surface but some of it is so rusty that the metal is flaking off. Not sure how I need to approach that. Besides that, there are stretches of about 6” - 8” where the wall has pulled away underneath the overhang. I'm thinking that that's where the water leaks in. I'm not sure the limited kinds of caulk available at our small town hardware store will be up to the job. The guy there did mention some tar like stuff in a can. I may have to check that out.

Yesterday, I got the 8' ladder and peered at where the wall meets the roof on the inside where it leaks, which is not an easy thing since there's a sort of ledge there at the very top which is all rusty and corroding and I saw a hole! So obviously, it's not the outside section on the wall, it's the actual roof. So then I got the 12' ladder out and looked at the roof where the hole I saw from the inside was. No hole that I could see, but what I did see was that the edge of the metal roof panels have corroded away in varying degrees where they end in the shallow channel on the top of the overhang. There is a notch where the water is supposed to drain out but it was all clogged with rust so the water slips under the corroded ends of the roof panels and into the inside. Confused yet? I didn't have my camera with me on that 12' ladder so you will just have to use your imagination.

Here's a cross section:

Since my idea of patching the hole with a piece of sheet metal and silicone wasn't going to work, what I did was scrape away as much of the rust as I could and cleaned it as best I could while perched on the 12' ladder and then I filled in all the gaps with silicone where the roof panels had corroded away. Actually, I did four of the 16” sections. So, we'll see. It's suppose to rain today and Monday. I doubt it will work as a permanent solution as there is no way to tell if the silicone sealed against all that rust. I may be investigating that tar.

Oh, and the toilet is still leaking. Well, the floor was wet and there is some question as to whether it is leaking from the toilet or the valve that comes out of the wall.

In the meantime, I am still waiting on two deposit checks. I thought these people were in a hurry.

I'm driving in to the city later today to stay at my daughter's house while she and her husband spend a couple of days away with her husband's brother and his wife. I'll be the cook and chauffeur, fixing dinner and ferrying the kids to and from school and the boy to his job.


  1. Roseanne Roseannadanna said it best:
    "If it's not one damn thing, it's another."

  2. happy city duty! :)

    my husband used some of that tar stuff on our roof where the flashing had turned up. worked great.

  3. The light of your super powers blind me.

  4. That is about one of the worst designs I have ever seen. It looks like they designed it to leak into the wall. The roof panel needs to go over soffit and have a drip edge to prevent the water running under due to surface tension. As you said the caulk will work for a while, but the Texas heat will break it down unless you used a roofing caulk. Good luck.

  5. It sounds like an intricate procedure.

  6. Do you ever feel in need of something to do?

  7. Oof - you just have too much energy for me! I wouldn't mind climbing the ladder, though - but I would have any idea what to do when I got up there :)

  8. you have a lot on your list. I wonder if you could paint the roof with the paint they use for trailors. Think you need a new roof.

  9. This post brings out your inner engineer. :)

  10. Metal roofs are a major pain - particularly when they are corroded. It doesn't help that you live in a region that contributes more to corrosion than other parts of the country. The solution depends on your objective. Clearly the best solution is to replace the roof - an expensive option, true, but without a doubt the best. And it comes with a 20-30 year warranty. Second option is to fix the problem yourself. Less expensive but it does require some knowledge of metal roof design and some sheet metal working experience. Third is to patch. Gooping it up with silicone or tar will work for a while but the corrosion will continue (if you don't cut it out) no matter how good your prep so any patch will be a short term fix probably needing a re-patch every year or so.
    A popular solution for metal roofs is to clean and then coat with an elastomer "paint" - available from Home Depot to Lowes. This doesn't solve the corrosion problems at the edges but it does resolve any leaks in the field of the roof due to failed rivets and sealing screws.

  11. Along with what you've already done on the roof some rust preventative paint might be a good idea. I wonder if the crack isn’t bigger than the silicone is meant to handle. I would recommend Black Jack All Weather Roofing Cement. It comes in a gallon can, and I’ve used it for years, having even put in on the rain. It’s also cheap, so don’t let the cost make you think it’s no good. I apply it with a wide putty knife; you will need some gasoline or kerosene to clean the knife when you’re done.

    As for the toilet, you need to find the source of that leak right away. If it's leaking from the bottom, it's not a complicated job to remove the toilet and replace the wax seal (I’m sure you can find directions on Youtube or in home repair books), but it does mean lifting the toilet, so you might need some help with that. It is a big, expensive, and messy job to replace a bathroom floor, and if the water is getting under your floor covering, it won’t be long before you would need to do it, so you really need to do whatever it takes to fix the problem ASAP.


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