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What's the least intrusive way to install flashing where my roof intersects with a wall? Do I need to tear up a bunch of shingles or can simply attach the flashing with something on top of some roof sealant in the valley? I suppose one option is to install the flashing and find a column's worth of matching shingles... how do I find out what the local codes are specific to this?

As you can see, there are old (?) water stains visible on the sheathing inside the garage, though I've never been able to detect any wetness by touch. I should really cut a hole into the drywalled ceiling and take a look around now that I think of it... Would tracing the current stains with a Sharpie be a means to detect if the stains are growing? Should I replace the sheathing as long as I'm at it?

Unfortunately the previous owners must not have noticed (or cared) that the roofers forgot the flashing. Our inspector caught the issue when we were buying the house but I'm just now getting around to doing something about it a year later.

The image of the wet spot on the siding was taken after some light rain. I'm not sure why it's just that one area.

Also, I can tell that the front step adjacent to this wall has been slowly sinking for a long time based on several factors (images included). The previous owners said they changed the grade of the step (after some water got into the crawlspace) so it would slope away from the house "as it should" but it looks pretty crappy to me. This is probably related to the missing flashing, right? Is there a good DIY fix for this?

And I'm aware of the sag in the rafter (though maybe it's just the fascia - based on that cut in it near the peak?) but I have no idea what to do about it or how to determine how big of a problem it is. Is it as simple as taking a look around in the ceiling and I'll be able to tell?

Any tips or advice is more than appreciated!

Other Info.:

  • House built ~30 years ago
  • Roof replaced 5 years ago
  • Siding is hardiboard
  • Added pics of the garage interior and front step. Note: I didn't do that horrible patch job. The previous owner did. – user74426 Aug 18 '17 at 21:18
  • Any comments / thoughts about the possibly-sagging rafter or replacing the sheathing as long as I have the siding off? Any estimates on how much materials will cost? – user74426 Aug 22 '17 at 12:41
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I think I'd be removing those short runs of siding and sliding step flashing into the shingle cascade. Hardboard is cheap and easy to work with.

You might also do a temporary-ish fix by loosening the right-hand ends of all the siding boards and sliding oversized step flashing in. You'd want it to extend 6-8" onto the roof, and it would overlay the shingles. It won't look great, but it'll go a long way to remedying the problem until you replace the siding.

  • Do you think the sagging fascia is indicative of a sagging rafter? – user74426 Aug 29 '17 at 21:53
  • That's the subject of a new question, but it could be a sagging or poorly-built fly rafter. I doubt that the gable truss is sagging. – isherwood Aug 30 '17 at 0:28
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That's a bigger disaster than you see. That Hardiboard needs to be cut at least 1" or so above the roof surface. Believe it or not, Hardiboard can't get wet. It's the engineers' dirty little secret, can't wait to dole out the big fat "I told you so's" when the lawsuits begin....

That wet spot is your sign - you need to remove all the siding from the gutter on up, install step flashing, with the kick-out at the bottom you described, then reinstall the siding. You'll sleep better at night knowing it was done right, and it won't leak anymore.

EDIT TO ADD: I don't believe your stoop is related to the leak. May be a contributing factor, but not the culprit. Stoops are poured on ground that is disturbed and excavated during construction, on backfilled soil. Repeatedly, builders and homeowners pour stoops without firmly anchoring the pad to the foundation with steel to prevent reverse sloping. In your case, the stoop needs to be broken up, properly anchored, and repoured. Sorry.

  • Why is it a disaster and what does the wet spot have to do with it? (sincere question). – user74426 Aug 18 '17 at 20:52
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    It's a big sponge area. The siding, being improperly flashed, then installed too close to the roof, is whicking moisture, to the point where random wet spots are showing, and it's running inside. The disaster is that it's all happening, totally hidden under a seamingly undisturbed beautiful paint job. – NPM Aug 21 '17 at 16:51
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Revising my answer given the follow ups.... Firstly: While it is probably not going to go anywhere, contact the contractor to see if they will own it and help fix it. (shrug). Technically they should, but it's very unlikely.

Secondly: You asked the least obtrusive way. As ugly as it is going to be,you could use an aluminum brake, put a piece of aluminum up, that is at least like 6" above the roof line and is an "L" shape. Make sure at the peak you give yourself enough aluminum left over to create a drip edge. Set the aluminum against the siding and use trim nails or roofing nails to secure it in place. Then, go to town with Roofing tar/sealant/cement and cover it along the shingles from top to bottom right to the gutter.

it's going to be ugly, but it will give the water a track to run, and drive it away from the siding. It is indeed, "the least obtrusive" way.

  • I added another picture which should help to answer your question. – user74426 Aug 21 '17 at 22:42
  • the square footage around that area of roof in question sees water from two (albeit 3) sides, like a peninsula or a funnel. So where does the gutter spout empty? towrads the flower bed past the stairs? – noybman Aug 22 '17 at 0:35
  • That picture was taken prior to when I moved in and installed an extension onto the downspout which empties the water 6' away from the foundation (towards the tree and out in front of the window). It was previously only 2-4 feet away from the foundation. Yes, there's plenty of snow and ice where I live. My shoveling routine concludes by using a telescoping roof rake to pull snow off any part of the roof I can reach all around the house. – user74426 Aug 22 '17 at 12:34

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