Waterproofing a roof typically entails using a liquid sealant that is designed to repair leaks or to seal an entire roof. The techniques and materials used to waterproof a roof vary depending on the kind of roof you have and the nature of the repairs you need to make. In fact, the first step is to assess the extent of any needed repairs.
A novice can generally fix small problem areas or perform the routine maintenance needed to waterproof a roof. Keep in might that it might be necessary to waterproof an entire roof if it is leaking and the source cannot be located. If the job seems complicated or the roof is in need of serious repair, consider enlisting the help of a professional.
To waterproof a roof with tar shingle, check for ripped or warped shingles that might be allowing water to seep through. A caulking gun filled with silicone sealant usually will work in repairing leaks related to these kinds of problems. If the roof has a chimney, check around it to look for areas that might allow water to get in. Use the sealant to repair any problem areas.
Poured concrete roofs require a waterproof coating that seals the concrete to help prevent it from shifting or dissolving. This can be a major problem in areas that have freezing temperatures in the winter followed by a lot of rain in the spring. Weather extremes can cause the concrete to crack, allowing water to seep through.
The appropriate coating for a concrete roof is one that provides a rubbery or plastic-like coating. These coatings will shift and expand with the concrete. They also provide a watertight seal to prevent the roof from leaking. Be sure to look for products made specifically for concrete roofs and carefully follow all instructions.
Be aware there are pros and cons if you decide to waterproof a roof on your own. Much of this depends on your skill level and experience. The advantages include increasing your home repair skills, saving money and understanding how to do waterproofing should any leaks spring up in the future.
If you do the repairs incorrectly, however, you probably will spend even more money to hire a contractor who can correct the job. There also is a chance that you will damage the roof or injure yourself. Remember to allow yourself ample time to complete the project, and always put safety first. Use a strong, sturdy ladder or scaffolding, and make sure to wear foot gear that will prevent you from slipping while on the roof.