Roof leak, between gutter and shingles

Old 07-22-14, 10:18 AM
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Roof leak, between gutter and shingles

My roof is leaking between the gutters and whats behind it (so it looks to me). I had some estimates to fix and one guy told me I need new gutters, that was the problem. Another guy told me dont let anyone sell you new gutters, without me ever saying someone already had. Been told several different things, different prices and I do not know what the right anwer is. I am thinking I dont need new gutters as they are in fine shape, just behind them its leaky. So.. here are some images. I am thinking flashing is missing and remove gutters, put in flashing, reinstall existing gutters. Should solve leak. But.. I am not an expert by any means and hope someone here can give some pointers?? What is causing the roof to leak?? Best way to fix?? thanks for any help.
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Old 07-22-14, 11:54 AM
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Although I don't think the photos are sufficient to pinpoint the problem with 100% certainty I will tell you what I can see.

Problem #1 is what looks like too much shingle over hang. I can't tell what if any drip edge you have underneath there or if there is any at all. But a common (and faulty) installation technique with the shingles at the roof's edge is to let way too much of them hang over the roof edge into the gutter. More than an inch or so past the roof edge is too much and the instructions on alot of shingles call for 1/2 or 3/4 inch. Hacks do this to try to ensure that the water cascading off those shingles has nowhere to go but into the gutter so they don't get any call backs about leaking behind the gutter. In the beginning it does prevent this. But eventually because too much of the shingles are unsupported by the structure, they start to weaken and deteriorate prematurely, degrading their ability to prevent water intrusion.

#2: The rot and peeling paint in that corner indicates that water is still attacking the area particularly badly. There are only but so many ways that could be happening. If they have been overwhelmed by heavy rains water that is trapped at the roof edge which backs up onto the roof could be finding its way through the roof layers and into the structure. But what could be even more likely is that corner right next to that section of wood is leaking badly and water coming out there is seeping onto the fascia and causing it to rot. Have they been inspected and sealed on a regular basis since you've owned the home? Caulking at those seams tends to harden, crack, and leak over time, meaning all those joints need to be periodically cleaned up and re-caulked. Otherwise it gets worse over time until water that should be making its way out of the downspout is leaking through those joints and attacking the wood.

You didn't say what the second guy said but if I were looking at that roof what I would tell you is the following:

1) The installation of the shingles at the roof edge does not look good.

2) The gutters look to be in dire need of maintenance.

3) There is visible fascia rot and probably more that is not visible, which could mean there are openings where water is leaking beneath the roof and causing still more rot inside the structure that you cannot see. A proper repair will involve removing the gutter to inspect and replace all rotted sections of fascia. At that time if there is anything else going on underneath those shingles such as missing drip edge that could be causing a problem I will let you know and we can discuss options. If you are curious, here is an estimate to install drip edge but it is not in any way meant to indicate that I believe that is all you need, and if I find more problems than just that the cost will go up.

4) The labor involved to remove and then re-install the gutter system constitutes the majority of the cost of full replacement, and materials do not add much more. The most cost effective option in the long run is to bring my truck with the gutter machine out when I'm ready to put it all back together, spin off a few stretches of seamless gutters, and put those up to replace the old stuff. It leaves you with a fraction of the number of joints to leak which means much less maintenance for you in the long run. The fact that the problem has gotten this bad means that options that require less maintenance are probably best for you.

5) If you choose not to go this route that's OK, I will do my best to recaulk the old seams and corners and re-install the 15 year old stuff that you want to keep. But none of that portion of the work will come with any kind of warranty because I am not installing new materials furnished and fabricated by me to my own specifications. If they leak again, don't call me because I don't want to hear about it. Whereas if you let me sell you new ones there will be a life time warranty on the materials and you'll get my standard warranty on my labor.

6) If you have multiple layers of roofing shingles (it appears that you do, please correct me if I'm wrong) and/or your roof has deteriorated to the point where replacement is necessary now or in the very near future, this increases the probability that there may be future leaks due to hidden issues un-related to the work I do for you and that these leaks might happen in the same areas. As a result I will do my best to help you patch the worst problem areas but I cannot offer you a labor warranty if I do not get the chance to address every problem I find that could potentially contribute to the water issue.

Last edited by eharri3; 07-22-14 at 12:52 PM.

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