Replace Rotting Plywood Near Gutters
LESLIE: Steve in Washington has a roofing situation. What can we help you with?
STEVE: I’d like to know about replacing the plywood that rots around the gusset area and how you would do that without too much extensive work.
TOM: Hmm, well, is this plywood – you say the gusset area. What do you mean? Like around a chimney or – where is it leaking?
STEVE: Well, say that your gutters have overflowed …
TOM: Oh, oh, oh. OK, OK, I got it. Around the gutter area. OK. Said the gusset area. I just wasn’t familiar with gussets on a house.
The gutter area – well, listen. It’s a big job, Steve, but if it’s really bad it has to be done because you basically have to lift the roofing shingles off the roof in that area. How bad is this plywood rotted? Does it go all the way up in there or is it just at the edge?
STEVE: Well, actually it goes up probably about two feet from the bugs being eaten around it and it’s been left for a considerable amount of time. And so …
TOM: OK, well it’s time to pay the piper on this. You’re going to have to strip the roofing shingles off this roof and simply cut out the plywood and replace it.
STEVE: OK, cutting it out in two-foot sections or would it be – or would you replace a full four or – 4×8 sheet?
TOM: No, once you get the roofing shingles off, then what you can do is only replace the deteriorated part. Once the shingles are off if only the first two feet is deteriorated then you can simply chalk a line and cut that two-foot piece out. And then replace that.
TOM: So you just are basically going to patch it then you’d put more underlayment down there and then roofing shingles. And one thing you might want to add there is also something called Ice and Water Shield.
TOM: That’s going to stop this from happening permanently.
STEVE: Ice and Water Shield.
TOM: Yeah, that’s right. It’s a rubberized membrane.
TOM: One of the ones that we recommend is made by Grace and it basically will prevent ice damming so that if the water freezes in the gutter, snow melts on the roof, comes down and tries to back up under the roofing shingles it’ll protect that area where you’ve had the rot.
STEVE: That like a snow seal?
TOM: Well, I don’t know what you would call a snow seal but it’s simply called Ice and Water Shield.
STEVE: OK. Now, this plywood, now around the edge, I guess, when the house was built they put wafer board down instead of plywood. And it has caused the stuff to expand …
TOM: Yeah well, if it’s not plywood what you’re describing is something called aspenite or OSB board.
STEVE: Yes, right.
TOM: And that, again, is another sheathing product that’s going to have to be replaced.
STEVE: Well, good. Thank you so much.