How Do I Temporarily Patch a Roof Leak?

How Do I Temporarily Patch a Roof Leak?

It has the possibility to happen to anybody; you wake up after a brutal storm only to find out you have a leaky roof! This is most common in older homes with damaged shingles. Homeowners in Vandalia, Ohio should be extra wary of this, as most houses and buildings in the area are at least 20 years old. Even the most insignificant of leaks could be a threat, so it’s essential to know how to temporarily patch a leak. 

When left unattended, your leak will cause some serious property damage. No roofers in Dayton, Ohio will be able to come down for roof leak repair right away, so you’re left with a serious problem until help arrives. 

Many homeowners make the mistake of using a bucket to catch the water from the leak, but simply stop there. Small leaks will lead to ceiling collapses when ignored. First and foremost, you want to check for a few things before you temporarily patch your leak.

Locating and Patching

Finding the origin of the leak is the first priority. Place a bucket or a pot to catch the incoming water from the leak. Next, check your ceiling for any sort of moisture buildup. On some ceilings you will be able to do this by checking your ceiling boards, or on others, you will be able to simply see the water stains from the leak. 

At this point, you’ll want to make sure water is not pooling above your ceiling. The weight of this water will cause a ceiling collapse, or at the very least some serious water damage. You will alleviate the weight of the water on your ceiling by making a small hole for the water to drain through. Remember, make sure your bucket or pot is large enough to catch all excess water. 

Now that you know the location, the next step is to patch your emergency roof leak until a professional is able to take a look. Below we’ve listed several different ways to temporarily patch your roof:


Once the location of the leak is verified, a common approach taken by many is covering the affected area with a tarp. Tarps are in this manner, but remember to secure the tarp to your property. An unsecured tarp will not hold and will fly off the roof. 

When the leak persists, lay down a second tarp below the first one. Temporarily installing a tarp is dangerous, so use caution when doing so. 

Roofing Tape

Roof tape is also a solid choice for a quick, temporary fix. In addition to being cheap, it is also readily available in most general stores. When applying, it should be used on the inside of your roof. 

Roofing Cement

It’s recommended to keep a small amount of roofing cement in storage for situations like this. After all, plastic roofing cement is manufactured to close and seal small holes and openings. Make sure you have a small trough or putty knife to apply the cement, as well as enough of the cement to adequately cover the source of the leak. 

Roof Mastic

Roofing mastic is essentially a higher-grade version of cement. Mastic should be pushed deep into any cracks and holes to ensure the leak is sealed. It should also be spread around the affected area to prevent further damage. 

Remember, all of these options are temporary solutions. For a permanent solution, you’ll need a responsive, reliable roofing contractor. 

Finding a Permanent Solution

Your leak will be permanently patched and fixed when you contact a solid contractor. Poor roof maintenance could result in expensive storm damage repairs in the future. There are several roofing companies in Dayton, Ohio, but only we at Van Martin have the best service, craftsmanship, and experience. 

Why Choose Van Martin?

Are you looking for a contractor for some roof repair in Dayton, Ohio? We offer roof inspections on all residential or commercial roofs. No matter what home improvement project or roofing repair you’re in need of, we are up to the task and will deliver only the best work. We work directly with our customers to provide the perfect roofing solution for them.

We’re committed to our community, and to show this, we’re giving a free roof replacement to one lucky homeowner twice a year through our On The House program! Our mission statement is simple: assist all home and business owners in making the best decisions with their roofing and related systems. So give us a call or schedule a roof evaluation online with us today!