Tara Zeger
I had a horrible contractor build my house about 5 years ago. He assured me that he was well versed in installing a metal roof. He was not, and after a few months major leaks began to show in my home. I hired a contrator who is a member of the local BBB and a member of the National Roofing Contractors Assocation to fix the roof. They removed and replaced the majority of the roof and certified their work for 5 years. I now have moisture and we cannot determine if it is condensation or an actual leak. There is no moisture barrier or felt. There is insulation and a vented foam type of insulation (I don't know the technical term) directly against the roof). The roof has a ridge cap and vented soffit. The roof was "fixed" in May of 2006 and I did not have any issues with any leaks or water after the replacement until about a month ago. It is odd as we had some very hard rain during the spring and fall of last year and did not have any problems. We had a significant ice/rain/snow event and the problem began. The issue is a cathedral ceiling, one side has two dormers and two recessed lights, the other side has no dormers, but two skylights. The moisture problem is between two dormers, and presents itself through two recessed lights and runs down my wall. With the pitch of the roof, I don't really think it's leaking at the spot where it's showing, but higher up on the roof. We have since had two more snow storms and one cold rain storm, all of which had water running out of the ceiling and down the wall. Yesterday it was 60 degress and we had three inches of rain, and my ceiling did not leak at all. Their "certified" roofer has been out twice. Once he looked at the water stains on the celing and looked at the roof from the ground. At that point I asked if condesation could cause it, and he did not think so. He sent a roofer out to inspect the roof, and he did not see any exterior issues, and said he didn't know what was going on. I called him again after the last leak event, which he got really nasty and said he didn't know what to tell me. He then offered that he thought it may be condensation. At my urging, he is coming tomorrow and is going to take a section of the roof off , to see if we may be able to visualize where the water stains are inside the roof. How can we determine if it is a leak v condensation? If it was condensation, wouldn't the other side of the ceiling show water damage as well, or other areas of the house that get more sun and heat? As well, during earlier snow storms, wouldn't it have leaked then from condensation? It's seems that something happened during that last snow/ice/rain storm perhaps a seal broke or something? If it were a true leak, wouldn't it have leaked during the heavy warm rains last night? Any fool proof way to determine if it's one or the other, as I can't visualize the roof, unless I remove the cathedral ceiling? Help...very confused. The contractor is willing to work on the roof, but doesn't seem to have any suggestion, other than what I offer.
Guest User
Sorry that you are going through all these troubles. Well, I'm confused about your explanation. Cathedral ceiling is when you have exposed roof beams/rafters inside the room and can see the roof deck. I'm assuming that it is. You mentioned the insulation. Is it between the deck and roofing material? What is the roofing material? Shingles/Shakes/Tiles/Standing Seam? Who is the manufacturer? Any way. I do believe you are having a leak. Condensation can not cause so much water that it runs all over your walls -at least i do not believe so, and IF it was in fact condensation, you'd first experience it long time ago. What calls a "red flag" is the fact that you do not have underlayment. This is a NO-NO. All metal roofs need it. And the BBB-certified roofed of yours should know it! So if you are paying him for these "repairs", stop! First of all, regular roofer SHOULD NOT install metal roofs unless they are trained to do so, as metal roofs are very different from shingle roofs when it comes to installation. When I say trained, I do NOT mean factory trained, as the factory training only gives you the basics and you do not learn much from them. You need a Pro, specializing in metal roofs. My advice to you is to pull down all roof panels install synthetic underlayment - preferably breathable one. Make sure that in your valleys, along the eaves, and around skylights there is Ice and Water shield. All end/side-walls (where roof meets the wall - eg sides of a dormer) must have underlayment going up the wall at least 6 inches. Get a pro do do it for you - not the "NRCA certified roofer", as most of the time those guys don't know what they are doing when it comes to metal roofs. BTW, pictures would help. I do not know if you can post them here. If you have any other questions, you can e-mail me: [email protected] Good luck.
Todd Miller
Isaiah Industries, Inc.
Thanks Leo. I am curious how this is all turning out.
Guest User
well...It's not turning out so well. The roofer came out and remove some of the panels on the front of the house (where I have the leak onto the drywall) and they were covered with moisture on the backside. They removed panels on the roof from the back of the house and they were completely dry. Roofer feels it's condensation (seems to be). Back side of house has roof with baffles running directly into gutters and vented soffit (seems to be no moisture issues there, and roofer said that's the way it should be). Front side of house has baffles ending about a foot before end of house roof. They end in dead space before porch roof. Porch roof extends about 6 feet beyond baffles before roof ends in gutters and vented soffit edge (the vents were only the width of the gutter). Roofer feels that condensation was dripping though drywall at recessed light, because a hole was cut in baffles ( I guess I'm using correct term - foam sheets with air channels in them) to allow for lights, so water is dripping through those holes. Roofer suggested 1)removing and reinstalling roof again with moisture barrier and felt for a small fortune. House is only 5 years old - and I already spent 5g last year - I really can't afford that option. Second option he suggested was venting the porch roof to allow proper ventilation, and thus avoid condensation. His theory again being that the "baffles" should end directly into vented soffit to allow the intake of air and push it through the ridge cap. I have since vented every other piece of soffit on the front of the porch (it does wrap around three sides, I have not made it there, yet). The porch is about six feet wide, and approx 26 feet long. No leaks noticed for several weeks (may be due to milder temperature) and leaked a little last night. So, I now pose three questions: 1: I did not extend the baffles directly down into the vented porch soffit. I though the 6 foot pieces of vented soffit would allow for enough air flow into the baffles. Metal roof has baffles against it, then about a foot of dead air space before the cieling insulation. How important is it for the baffle end directly against the vented soffit? I hear much more air going through the cieling, but it may be trapped between the insulation and baffles. Will extending them into the soffit help? 2: Should I replace soffit with vented soffit across entire lenght instead of every other piece? 3: What about a power vent near the ridge cap? The leak is only in my great room, that has a cathedral ceiling and loft, with drywall. I don't seem to have the problem any where else, or at least I don't notice it. Could be that I only have the issue there, bacause the lost heat of the cathedral ceiling into the peak of the room.
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