Marathon Life

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Condo roof update - leaks continue indefinitely

I have been very lazy to do a post, so on this rainy Saturday here we go. The repairs to the roof have yet to be done. I have been working with 2 additional roofers to get bids. I finally got a bid from one (San Diego Roofing), which was a lot less than the first vendor (Admiral) who gave us a bid in January. The other vendor (Mission Valley Roofing) has already been here to inspect (2 weeks ago) and has to come back to see another problem area we found. What I have learned with contractors is you have to constantly follow up with them or they will never call you back. You have to email, call, text, etc, over and over again. It is quite frustrating. I am finally making some headway.


I just want my walls and ceiling put back up. Right now you can still see the exposed wood and 2x4s, etc (see photos). It doesn't look very attractive. Last weekend it rained A LOT. I was worried that since we didn't tarp the one problem area of the roof, water would find its way in again. And it did. At least I was prepared and I put towels to collect the water and SAVE my floors. My bamboo floors have so far escaped any water damage. So last weekend when the rains stopped for a few hours on Sat I got up on the roof with my neighbors and we tarped the roof above my upstairs neighbor's balcony. I was happy we were able to do this. But the true test to see if this worked was going to be the next time it rained hard, which was last night (Feb 25) and this morning (Feb 26).

We got torrential last night that started in the middle of the night. I woke up at 4:19 am and went out into the living room. Water was leaking from the upstairs floor boards, hitting the ceiling and dripping down. I had already had towels and a trash bag over the towels and it's a good thing. There was a puddle of water on the trash bag. My bamboo floors were saved since I did this. Since my ceiling is exposed I was able to put towels and a small plastic container up in the ceiling to collect water. What I found interesting was the the water was just coming from the floor boards above. It WAS NOT traveling down the wall to the left of the sliding glass door (see photo above). The last time it rained it did that (last weekend), but since we tarped the roof it DID NOT do it again. 

This fact led me to believe that the main culprit was the tile patio above my patio. All along, all roof contractors pointed to the fact that this patio had tiles on it and they believed it was causing the leaking issues into my unit. Although we have roof issues, they said they believed the reason why the water was leaking into my unit right along the glass doors was because the patio area in front of my upstairs neighbor's glass doors was collecting water.

Just to explain about the patios, most until have a base patio that does not have tile on it. You can see the gray in the photos of my unit. It's very basic. So people have installed tile ON TOP OF the existing patio floor. This creates a lot of problems if not properly installed. There has to be a moisture barrier underneath the tile and everything needs to be sealed correctly. I don't think this was done to the unit above mine. Now I think I have proof.

Today the rain stopped for a few hours so I taped some black trash bags together with black duck tape. I went onto my neighbor's patio upstairs (with his permission) and taped them against his glass doors. Then I put some clear plastic that I had in my garage from when I painted. I put rocks to hold everything down. It is sloped so the water should just run off it. At least I can prevent most of any more water that may come in. I hope. I really had to use a lot of problem solving and creative thinking. I even went and found rocks on the property to use as weights.

This is my makeshift way to prevent water from entering my unit
It will be several weeks before any roof work can begin. We still need to decide as a board which vendor to use and then sign contracts, etc. So once again, it will take some time. The good news is that rain is not in the forecast for at least the next 8-10 days.

One of the contractors said that we should water test the patio when it is dry to see if the water leaks into my unit. All we have to do is have a hose run on it for 15 min. If water leaks down then we know the patio is not properly sealed and is the cause of the leak!  We have a board meeting on Mar 9, but I am going to suggest doing this next weekend when I know it will be dry. We may as well do this now when my walls are already taken out. I have nothing to lose.
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posted by Anthony at 7:11 PM

2 Comments:

Anonymous Terence Watthens said...

So how's the roof right now? Has it stopped leaking? Leaking can be hazardous, especially if a member of the family is allergic to molds, since molds easily form if there is excessive moisture in the atmosphere.

7:20 AM  
Blogger Clinton Comes said...

If it makes you feel better, I think every homeowner has their share of roof leaks and issues, and they were not good. And it I think it is a wise move that you opted for a repair. Aside from the hassles and stress brought by this roof dilemma, roof leaks can cause some major issues if left unresolved. It can weaken your roof structure and cause mold formation. I would suggest that you make some move to waterproof your roof and ceilings after the repair, so the probability of having another roof leak will be reduced. [Clinton Comes]

1:27 PM  

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