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Ask-The-Experts > I Have An Existing Metal Roof and Have A Question

roof leaks after ice storm
In January of 2009 we experienced a horrible ice storm that produced about 2” of ice followed by numerous days of snow on and off. The ice topped with snow did not budge on the roof for over almost 2 to 3 weeks if not longer. The building was built in 2010 and is 72’ x 198’ with a 12 ¾ pitch. Immediately after the ice had melted enough to slide off the roof I started having random leaks all over the building. Some leaks are consistent and some are so random it baffles me. On a bad day there is close to 20 leaks. I know a couple of trusses are bowed from the weight but there is not enough of them damaged to be the cause of the leaks. I do not have the anti-syphon metal and my screws are not in the valley. I know that ice damming occurred, however, only a couple leaks are close to the edge the rest are too far from the edge for the water to travel up. I also know that the building was overloaded and since it is agricultural I know that the weight load is not as high as commercial. Originally I suspected the ice had grabbed the screw head and ripped them loose causing the problem, however, after numerous random screws being backed out to check for damage it was evident that was not the problem. The insulation is standard blue board held together with duct tape. I know the overload caused the duct tape to give way in some if not most areas. There are no leaks near the ridge cap and it is still in-tact. My next guess is the metal stretched between the trusses which created a wick type problem. I only assume that if in fact the metal did stretch. Do you have any clue what might be the true cause of this problem? Since we are in an area that does not normally take this type of load on I am unable to get any help.
Thank you!
Have you consulted with your roofing manufacturer?

I'd be happy to try to help you but this is a little involved to do over the internet.

I am out of my office this week but please feel free to call me next week or later at 1-800-543-8938 ext 201

Thanks.

Todd
Did the leaks occur of the next several days, weeks, etc? If so, what were the temps in those time frames?

The moisture that accumulated between/behind the panels can take a while to makes it way down through insulation depending on the temperatures to the exterior and it is entirely possible that the liquid moisture could have been driven up between the panels, refreeze, and thaw at a later time.

Given the relative porosity of the structure of the foam and taped seams (not the foam itself) you have numerous entry points and pathways.

Do the leaks persist during rainfall now or were the ice and snow conditions the primary climate conditions during the leaks?

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