How to Fix Many Leaks on a New Steel Roof

How to Fix MANY Leaks on a New Steel Roof

Reader GUY in SHELTON is probably wishing he would have ordered a new Hansen Pole Building right now. He writes:

“Best way to fix MANY roof leaks on a guaranteed newly built pole barn with metal roof over 2-inch vinyl glass woven insulation. Purlins are on 2 feet centers with no underlayment. Thank you.”

Mike the Pole Barn Guru advises:

Sadly this makes my case for why clients should do their installations, as rarely do we ever find an instance of a D-I-Yer having roof leaks.

You need to put whomever installed your building on notice, following whatever procedure is outlined in your written contract with them. If there is no procedure outlined, send a certified letter, return receipt requested, to them, demanding prompt repair or replacement of leaking roof panels, as well as any metal building insulation underneath. Steel panels should never be installed over damp insulation, as this moisture can cause premature deterioration of panels and void steel manufacturer’s warranty. You might want to include that the repaired roof must be inspected by a representative of whomever manufactured your building’s steel panels and require them to sign off as to repair having been done adequately, so steel panel warranty is not compromised. You will want to pay careful attention to time frames, as Washington State only requires registered contractors to offer a one year warranty on materials and labor. Should you not get a prompt correction, you need to file a claim against their Contractor’s Bond (you may want to do this anyhow, as chances are you are not the only person this builder has done poor work for, and claims are paid in order filed). It may also behoove you to engage an attorney who specializes in construction law.

If a “random miss” occurs, repair is to have someone hold a wood block underneath the hole and drive a screw through the hole into the block.  This is the manufacturer’s only approved repair for a missed screw. 

Do NOT, under any circumstance, attempt to fix a missed screw hole with caulking.

Here is a short story about how I handled a similar situation, back when I was a builder:

3 thoughts on “How to Fix Many Leaks on a New Steel Roof

  1. How would you plug the holes if they are in the tops of the ribs?
    My original (and current) plan was to plug with adhesive sealant, either a high end RTV or maybe 3M 5200, being careful to not put too large a layer on to interfere with the overlap.

    “Do NOT, under any circumstance, attempt to fix a missed screw hole with caulking.”

  2. Thanks but, they are not installed yet, and there are likely many holes.
    The plan is/was to seal and repaint prior to installation.


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