PATRICK MCVAY

WRITER

My Musings

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Leak Stopper

I went out to get the paper the other day (yes, I still get the paper thrown at my house, the way most people used to get it “back in the day”) and found that the tattered rattan love seat out on my front porch was wet, the torn sisal rug was soaked across a 3-foot wide diameter, and a steady drip could be found emanating from the porch ceiling in several spots. I had a leaking roof.

This leak had been brewing for many years. Our home inspector told us 10 years ago that the rolled roof over the porch wasn’t new and would need to be replaced at some point, and 5 years later, when we had the slate roof that covers the bulk of the house entirely re-coppered, the roofer, Paul Ladd, informed me that our rolled roof had a few years of life left, but not much more.

I watched Paul’s employee Ian work up there on my roof and was completely convinced that he’d done excellent work. Especially interesting was to watch Ian remove slates one-by-one, number them, and later, after having installed a foundation of some sort of tar paper and 20-ounce copper flashing into each of the 8 dormer valleys, put them right back where he found them. Modern roofing may require less expertise to install, but the shingles don’t get reused a century after they were originally mounted when your pony-tailed Scottish roofer goes up there to re-copper the valleys.

 

slate roofing

 

They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To

 

 

I would like to have Paul and Ian return to my house to fix my porous rubber roof as well, but, alas, soon after the crew worked on my house, Paul was deported back to Ireland. This had nothing to do with roofs (nor rooves, as my father would point out is the correct plural form), but was the result of his apparently illegal US status, which became known when he was pulled over for a traffic infraction. I don’t know all the particulars, but I do hope that Paul and his wife Jenny landed on their feet back in Ireland and can be found repairing rooves there (slate, thatched, or otherwise).

 

Naughty Diet
Potboiler: "Deadly Snow"
 

Comments 2

Guest - Franc on Tuesday, 09 February 2016 17:30

Glad that you had good luck w/Paul Ladd. I had the opposite issue; my roof was improperly installed causing leaks in several rooms in my house. I had to have portions of the roof removed, windows dismantled, and walls opened up to dry out. To add insult to injury, since Paul had been deported, I had to sue him (in abstentia) and collect from the state. All told it took four years to be reimbursed for his shoddy workmanship!

Glad that you had good luck w/Paul Ladd. I had the opposite issue; my roof was improperly installed causing leaks in several rooms in my house. I had to have portions of the roof removed, windows dismantled, and walls opened up to dry out. To add insult to injury, since Paul had been deported, I had to sue him (in abstentia) and collect from the state. All told it took four years to be reimbursed for his shoddy workmanship!
Patrick McVay on Tuesday, 09 February 2016 19:24

That's a huge bummer Franc. We have a complicated roof with lots of valleys, and the previous owners had hired someone who did a hack job on a couple of leaking valleys such that continued to leak. Paul's employee Ian did excellent work. I suspect the valleys will not leak for decades. Unfortunately, we lose slates now and again, so we're back in the market for a roofer to make small repairs.

That's a huge bummer Franc. We have a complicated roof with lots of valleys, and the previous owners had hired someone who did a hack job on a couple of leaking valleys such that continued to leak. Paul's employee Ian did excellent work. I suspect the valleys will not leak for decades. Unfortunately, we lose slates now and again, so we're back in the market for a roofer to make small repairs.
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Monday, 18 December 2017

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