How to Fix a Leaking Conservatory Roof
If you’ve got a water leak in your conservatory roof, it needs to be repaired quickly. A small drip can soon lead to much more serious and more expensive issues. The conservatory is a wonderful part of the home, where you can enjoy plenty of natural light in complete comfort. Unlike yourself however, as your conservatory roof is constantly exposed to the elements, it can often take a battering. This constant assault by mother nature can particularly affect conservatory roofs, as they are constructed from multiple sections sealed together, each presenting a potential vulnerability. This guide is going to talk about ways to diagnose and repair a leak in your conservatory roof.
Why Is My Conservatory Roof Leaking?
The first step in fixing a conservatory roof leak is to find out exactly where and why the roof is leaking. There are many common places where water may be getting in, such as in the corners, between the polycarbonate roof panels or your conservatory roof could even be leaking where it joins the house if there’s an issue with the flashing.
The most common cause of a conservatory roof leak in older conservatories is simple wear and tear over time. As with all things, roofing materials deteriorate as time goes on, particularly if exposed to serious weather conditions for extended periods of time. If your conservatory roof is beginning to leak, then it can also cause both damp and mould in other parts of the home. Whilst choosing more durable conservatory roof materials such as lightweight metal tiles can extend its lifespan, nothing lasts forever. No matter what roofing material you choose, you’ll need to perform regular care and maintenance to keep your conservatory roof in top condition for longer.
Another common source of conservatory roof leaks are the roof vents. Whilst effective ventilation will greatly improve internal air quality and make your conservatory a more comfortable space, these vents can often be the cause of leaks, particularly as they age. You should check their condition annually, ensuring that the seal is still solid, and that the vents are properly insulated. If they’ve become worn or faulty, rainwater can quickly find its way into your conservatory roof and cause leaks, among other issues.
Whilst checking over your conservatory roof for the source of the leak, be especially thorough when inspecting your roof panels. There are many ways in which these can lead to leaks, such as if panels have slipped or been damaged by impacts such as falling debris. Improper installation or deteriorated sealing are other common causes of leaking conservatory roofs. The good news however is that it can be simple to restore your conservatory roof’s watertight properties, whether by repositioning, resealing or fully replacing any faulty panels.
Faulty guttering is another frequent cause of conservatory roof leaks. This could be due to cracks or damage to the gutters themselves, which will lead to leaking and water damage to the face of your conservatory. Or, if your conservatory guttering has become blocked, this will leave any rainwater with nowhere to go, leading to potential water ingress as well as making the air around your conservatory roof space much more humid. This excess moisture in the air can quickly lead to issues such as damp, mould, and condensation.
The final area that is a common source of conservatory roof leaks is where your conservatory joints your house. In general, leaks coming from this area are caused by an issue with your conservatory roof flashing, which is designed to act as a bridge and watertight seal between your property and your conservatory roofing materials. Inspect your flashing and ensure that it is free from damage, and still securely fitted across any and all joins. If you find that your conservatory roof flashing has been damaged, it will need to be replaced.
Will I Need to Replace My Conservatory Roof?
Whether or not you’ll need to perform a full conservatory roof replacement depends heavily on how badly damaged it has become. More often than not, if you’ve addressed the problem early, you may only need to replace one or two components. Thanks to advances in roofing materials, elements such as the flashing, guttering, vents, or polycarbonate sheets can be replaced by a competent DIYer without much issue.
However, if your conservatory roof has been leaking for a long time, you may find that deeper structural issues have set in. Whether this involves your conservatory frame, glazing, roof space or anything else, you may need to consider much more serious work. Issues such as roof leaks, damp or mould tend to worsen very quickly, so it’s vital to address the problem as soon as possible to prevent further expense down the line.
How Much Will It Cost to Fix My Conservatory Roof Leak?
The cost to repair a leaking conservatory roof depends entirely on how much work is necessary. Fully replacing a conservatory roof can cost from a few hundred pounds to well over £6000 for larger conservatories. The cost to replace your roof will also be dictated by where you live and what materials you’ve used to cover your conservatory roof.
Despite this cost, it’s absolutely vital to fix these issues as soon as possible. This is because problems such as roof leaks do not get better on their own, and by waiting you’re just adding further cost and damage to your property. A conservatory roof leak can present significant health risks once it leads to mould infestations affecting air quality, which is dangerous both to people and pets. You may also find that furniture or other possessions become damaged by water, as well as opening your property up to further structural damage due to excess moisture.
You may not have to fork out this cash yourself – as the vast majority of conservatories are joined to the main property, they will be covered by building insurance. Provided you’ve informed your insurer of its existence beforehand, most will consider a conservatory part of the house, and therefore may be able to help you out. It’s worth noting however that building insurance tends to cover sudden damage rather than gradual wear and tear, or issues that have become worse due to your own neglect. So, if your conservatory roof is leaking due to a sudden storm you may be in luck, but if it’s simply down to years of erosion you may have to cover the cost of the repair yourself.
Finally, it may be worth checking if your conservatory is still under warranty if it was constructed by a company or supplier. There is however a lot of fine print when it comes to most warranties, so be sure to investigate yours thoroughly before you get in touch with the builder.
Can I Fix a Conservatory Roof Leak Myself?
While we certainly would not advise a DIY beginner or homeowner to undertake a full conservatory roof replacement, many of the issues that lead to roof leaks can be fixed quickly and easily by almost anyone. Often, replacing one roof panel or vent, or re-applying sealant may be enough to fix most leaking conservatory roofs.
As always, take all necessary safety precautions when performing work around the home. Wait for the weather to dry out, and do not attempt to repair your conservatory roof during heavy showers or a storm. If you’ve exhausted all of your options and still can’t find the source of your conservatory roof leak, it may be time to consult a professional. Remember, any unnecessary damage you cause yourself may not be covered by your insurance.
You should hopefully now have a much better idea of how to tackle a leaking conservatory roof. Fortunately, most leaks can be fixed rather quickly and shouldn’t cost too much, especially if you’ve gotten on top of the issue early. Just remember to perform a thorough investigation, be safe and don’t perform any work you’re not comfortable doing. Professionals are always on-hand if needs be.