Friday, September 16, 2011

Oh, No. Oh, No!

I was all poised to make a cheerful post about how I was getting to the exciting part of my 3rd floor study repainting work.  But about three hours ago I was wiping down the doors and frame of the hatch to the storage space, to see how much repainting they really need.*  And I noticed little brown droplets at the top of the frame, inside where I don`t see it with the doors closed.  They wiped right off with the sponge.

Wet. Wet where it shouldn't be wet.

I felt the paper of the batt insulation, which some previous owner installed between the roof rafters of that space and I never got rid of.  Damp.  I poked in the worklight.  And where the paper is torn and the pink batting is visible, I see mold-- yes, nasty black mold-- in the fibers.

Oh, no, is my roof leaking?  I don't have the money to deal with this!

I went outside, to see if I could get a view of my roof.  From the next door neighbors' yard, the shingles look pretty good.  No terrible curling or cupping that I can see.  The neighbor next to them was in his back yard, so I joined him to see if he had any ideas and maybe to get a better look from there.

He doesn't think the overall shingle job looks bad, either.  But I notice some definite waviness at the eaves . . .  ice dams from past winters?  Unlike my next door neighbor on the other side, who got up and repaired and reshingled his entire roof this summer, the neighbor two doors down can't claim too much proficiency in handyman skills.  But he did have a useful piece of advice:  That it's possible the problem may have been caused by the heavy rains we've had this summer, and it could be my homeowner's insurance might cover it.  Yeah, maybe, but I don't want to call my agent to inquire and have my rates go up even if it turns out not to be insurable damage.  True, he said, but I could get a home inspector out to take a look and see what the likely cause might be, before I make any insurance agent calls.

So.  Don't know if I've followed the best procedure, but (after verifying that my home warranty company doesn't cover roof repairs at any time) I found a local roof inspector via the ServiceMagic site.  Lots of reviews that were high over all.  Soonest appointment that suits us both is a week from tomorrow at 8:30 AM, and I hope it doesn't rain so he can get a ladder up to the eaves and see what's happening at those gutters.

Meanwhile, I`ve cleared most of my boxes and bags and so on out of the storage space.  None of it is wet.  But I definitely have mold in that insulation, in the inch or so next to the brown paper.  I wonder if the problem is due to inadequate ventilation in there, especially with all the rain we had last spring and this summer.  I know it wasn't like that last January when the Comcast guys came up to put the cable in.

Got the dehumidifier in there running.  And I don't think it'd be a bad idea to come in with the mildewcide and give those icky-looking batts a few squirts.  My nose is itching a bit with that hatch door open.

Meanwhile, will I continue with the repainting?  I think I shall.  Those walls and trim shouldn't be affected by any roof work, and if I can get the study repainting mess straightened out and put away, I'll have more floor space if I have to clear out the closet so they can inspect the roof space on the other side of the house, too.

*Ironically, I was listening to an episode of Holmes Inspection on my computer as I worked.

1 comment:

Cedrick Finly said...

Ugh, that looks serious. Better get a professional to check that out. There might be other problems that you can't see. Molds can be a serious problem; a lot of homes become uninhabitable because of mold infestation.