When we purchased our house, we were well aware of the need to fix the biggest problem - the roof. The design of the roof allows all the water from the front half of the house to drain back toward the center of the house; it allows all the water from the back half of the house to drain forward, into the same place. The center wall in our house has not been able to withstand the massive amounts of water that have been collected directly above for the past sixty years. After four months of living with buckets in multiple rooms and a waterfall down the side of the fire place, the weather finally permitted us to begin this animal of a project.
Since our house has a flat roof, we were unsure of the appropriate product to use, and spent months ahead of time researching our options. With the help of a roof consultant, we decided to go with a PVC White Membrane. The consultant also advised that we tear off the existing roof, insulation, vapor barrier, gutters and downspouts, and completely start over.
The first step was the demolition. A crew of friends spent the weekend tearing off the three layers of rolled rubber roofing from the back half of the house. The more they worked, the more we realized how big of a project this was going to be. The roofing was run up the back side of the front half of the house, under the wood siding, so Matt had to remove the siding in order to completely tear off the layers of roofing.
When the rolled roofing was removed, the insulation was revealed - black, hard blocks of cinder-like material. As we pried them off the decking, they broke into pieces and left a layer of black dust all over us and the roof. After a good sweep, our wood ceiling was ready for a new vapor barrier.
With the help of our god send, Dalton, we managed to get the new vapor barrier, insulation and roofing down on the back half of the house fairly quickly. The PVC membranes come in six foot strips and the seams require heat welding, a process new to Matt.
After the back half of the house was complete, we moved to the front half, where the process was a little different. We wanted to add slightly more of a slope to this roof and we accomplished this by installing tapered insulation.
After two months of strenuous labor and diligent work, the roof replacement was completed. Now on to the next project: replacing the siding and windows. Stay tuned!