Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A too long short story and a tip from me to you ... just saying......

Recently I searched out a reputable roofer to fix a leak that has nagged me for years now. I thought it had been fix by the fellow I hired to put on a new roof. He told me he had noticed it and did what he considered to be a quick fix. I was elated if he was right and glad to know that there are still some dedicated people doing hard, hot work for a reasonable price. It took a while to notice the indications that he had NOT fixed the afore mentioned leak. The roofer I was led to by some friends at a local eatery whom I break bread with one or two mornings a week, came over and evaluated my problem. He also admonished me for trying to repair it myself, calling the roofing tar from a cartridge I had used "Roofer in a can." He didn't hint around. He came right out and told me that what I did had actually made the leak worse. He was correct. It did get worse after I tried to do it myself.

He came over on the next Saturday morning and using some of the shingles I had saved from the new roof job, took about an hour to achieve what he assured, "Should" do the job. I was to call him if I discovered otherwise. I'm glad to report that so far; so good. We've had some heavy rain since and so far (knock on wood) I see no hint of a leak. Because of his accumulated experience and skills, he also shared some special "tidbits" pertaining to my current roof condition and possible future expectations. In his own words, it won't be too long before I may discover the need to have the WHOLE roof replaced. That was NOT welcomed information. Being the pessimistic kind of person I am, I told myself I would leave that up to the next person who owns this house. HEY! I'm not buying any green bananas now-a-days.

Now! Here's that tip I mentioned in the title of this post.
I'm going to suppose that a great many people live in homes that are frame and drywall on the interior walls. Many may even have drywall ceilings that have drywall compound on the ceilings that has been patterned with a round brush or sponge to create a common design everyone is familiar with.

Any "Do It Yourself" type handyman knows what corner and joint tape is as utilized by those that installed all that drywall in their house as it was being constructed. I'm going to do some "assuming" now. I find it hard to believe that I am the only home owner today that has noticed that the joint tape used in the corners where the vertical walls meet the horizontal ceilings has begun to pull away from the ceiling here and there around the house. If you are one of those, I'm wondering what you did about it. What I do know is that it looks very, very bad when it happens.

All good, skillful, experienced drywall craftsmen will apply a thin layer of joint compound under the joint tape before they begin the process of coating and applying designs on the ceilings. For all I know they may have come up with some device similar to a "Banjo" that is used on flat seams between sheets of drywall that applies the compound and tape all at the same time in the corners I referenced. What ever the case may be, for some reason the result is that they "skimp" on the film of compound under the tape that goes against the ceiling area. They must also end up with a thin layer of compound on top of the corner tape too. That's the only way I can explain the corner tape in that area coming loose and looking so bad. It took approximately twenty years for it to be noticed by myself. I don't know if that is what anyone should expect in the area of longevity when it comes to the lasting ability of drywall tape and joint compound. All I would ask is "Why doesn't the same thing happen to the vertical, inside corners of all the rooms also?" I know that they use a metal, corner "bead" to protect all the vertical, outside corners of the drywall panels. That explains why those areas don't have a similar problem.

I'll repeat myself; if you are one who has corner tape coming loose and looking bad in your home, what did you do about it? Perhaps you called a drywall repair person who came and fixed it someway. Perhaps you are one who doesn't really care how it looks here and there and can simply live with it. Perhaps you would try something like I did to make it better. Use a staple gun to hold it up on the ceiling panel and then cover it up with a heavy coat of paint. That method didn't work very long for me. I wouldn't recommend it for anyone else either.

Here's what that some roof repair man that fixed my leak suggested as a simple fix. Using a chalking gun and a cartridge of "painter's friend" type chalking, apply a bead of chalk in said bad looking corner and then smooth it out with a putty knife. Give special attention to the edge of the tape where the crack can be seen. Forcing some chalk through the crack and under the tape before applying a sufficient layer of chalk over the whole taped area on the ceiling panel. The chalk will act as "glue" when it dries and the surface coat will cover any surface blemishes. When it dries it is difficult to tell where the crack ever exited and the next time you paint, the chalk with accept the paint well. It was easy and quick for me and it looks great right now. Only time will tell if this method has a flaw. For what it's worth, there it is. HEY! It's free advice. Free is almost always good (except when it isn't.)

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