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Question DetailsAsked on 5/12/2015

Nombac Roofing did a horrible rubber job, can it be taken off and replaced? I had this company put a rubber roof,

I had this company put a rubber roof over my tar roof because I heard it lasted longer. 3 years later, We got water leaking in. We never had water leaking in the house. I called them back and they tried to charge me for repairs, I refused. The sales person finally came back and I went on the roof w/her. She said their was water under the roof. They put the rubber over the copping stone, it looks terrible. I have had problems every since. The paint on my walls in the corners are peeling. I don't know what to do. I keep having companies come out and do patch up work but the problem remains. My question is can the tar be taken off so I can have the roof be redone? Pls. help.

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1 Answer


If you have coping stones that are decorative, then they should have done a curb flashing attachment on the inside face of it, not draped over it. Of course, not that it is over it, your coping may have unsightly holes in it or even worse it may have adhesive on it if this was a glue-down job, so there might be a bunch of cleaning and sandblasting needed to clean up the coping.

You don't say what their warranty period was - but unless there was visible breakdown of the membrane from weathering, improper or shoddy installation was likely the source of the leak(s), so the applicable warranty (unless you bought supplemental labor and materials warranty from the manufacturer, if available) would be from the installer - and 3 years would be longer than a normal installer warranty.

Also, since you have had companies come out and do patches, the original contractor is not in the position that they can say any problems were done by the follow-up patch contractors. This also indicates the problem is long-running, which almost certainly kills any chance of insurance recovery, and would probably make an insurance claim meaningless other than that it would likely increase your premiums because even asking if something in covered can act as a "claim" on your insurance.

If you had a leak and the rep said there was water under the roof - well Duh ! Obviously if you had a leak there would have been water under it at least somewhere. You don't say if she said anything about where she thought the water was getting in ! Might be a thermal infrared scan would pick that up pretty easy, and it might be just a spot repair needed, not a general failure of the membrane itself. Since you say the paint in the corners is peeling, sounds like they may have blown the corner miter details, which is a very common place to make errors with built-up or membrane roofing.

Whether your homeowner's insurance will cover the damage and repair (if significant) would likely depend on whether there is visible physical damage to the roof like tear-through of fasteners or penetration by a flying object - leaks due to improper construction or deteriorated membrane would normally NOT be covered. However, because it did not leak for 3 years, that does help your case, because you can argue that it would have leaked earlier if the installation was defective. Of course, that argument is the opposite of what you have already used with the vendor, so you are caught in a catch-22 situation.

Yes the rubber can be taken off, as can the underlying built-up (tar) roofing, and actually if removing the membrane it would be bad practice to try to repair the tar roof with (assuming mechanically fastened versus glued-down rubber membrane) holes all through it from the membrane fasteners - better at this point to tear it all off and start from scratch.

One other thing - assuming this is a flat roof - would be looking into whether you can change it to a low-slope roof using tapered foam insulation under a membrane or built-up roofing material, to avoid the ponding issues of flat roofs.

Answered 5 years ago by LCD

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