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Old 03-18-2010, 03:36 PM   #1
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Roof is retaining water (!)

The roof over my kitchen is low slope, covered MB or BUR sheets. Some prior knucklehead owner dropped indoor-rated electrical conduit and wiring vertically through the roof (and through the joists) in order to run electricity into the kitchen ceiling, to avoid cutting through walls.

When it rained hard, water dripped in through the track lighting fixture. Not good. In the course of pulling all this **** out (and finding out they had cut the ground wires) I had to drill a new hole and it welled up! I discovered that water had seeped into the roof, and is apparently retained between the MB/BUR and the tar paper below. There's no evidence of other leaks in the kitchen, in the ceiling insulation, walls, etc.

Is there some way of getting the water out without tearing off the BUR entirely? For example slitting it along the gutter line, letting the water run out, and then resealing it.


I don't know a lot about roofing. Any thoughts about how to deal with this? Thanks.


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Old 03-18-2010, 04:44 PM   #2
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Being a low slope roof, this is an issue. On some low slope roof the slope isn't great enough to allow for proper drainage. My suggestion would be to attempt to see where the leak may be (if you have an attic, check for wet spots). Second would be to go on the roof and inspect where you think water may settle or leak through. (doesn't take much, one nail hole or crack) Repair this or use sylicone to patch. Third would be to do the surgery on the ceiling and track back to the leak. Sorry, not fun.


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daviswhite (03-18-2010)
Old 03-18-2010, 06:22 PM   #3
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So are you just trying to dry out the roofing? Did you already have the roof sealed up?
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daviswhite (03-18-2010)
Old 03-18-2010, 06:55 PM   #4
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Thanks for the response.

The geniuses had put three holes in the roof.

A. The first hole to feed electricity up to to the roof, using Romex outside (!) with indoor conduit fittings.

B. They then put in an elbow joint on top of the roof (fastened with a radiator hose) and ran the conduit six feet laterally toward the kitchen. Then two more holes through the roof to feed it back down, drilled vertically through two joists--one for each track of lighting. (They did that so they would not have to install workboxes in the ceiling.) The conduit had rust inside it. They used a T box that was too small for all the wire nuts, so they simply got rid of the grounds (!). Presumably the water got in through those conduits/holes. Anyway, I replaced all of it.

I permanently sealed up the two joist holes, but had to drill a third one to feed the electricity into a new location where I could install a box. When I drilled that hole, water came up.

There is no real attic space. It's just the height of the doubled 2X 8 joists. I used IC shallow recessed lighting cans.

So I was thinking I might slit a seam along the lowest part of the roof, perpendicular to the joists, and let the water run out. Is that feasible? Could I effectively seal it? How? I am pretty much a roofing newbie.

Thanks so much.

Except for the roof, I am glad to be alive--the house didn't burn down.
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leak , roof , roof repair

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