How to Fix a Leaky Gas Flue Roof Vent – RTV sealant is applied to the storm collar to fix the roof leak.
This repair is continued from Part 1.
The attic leak is believed to be caused by a bad seal around the storm collar. The storm collar acts like an umbrella to prevent moisture from entering the joint where the flashing cone meets the vent pipe.
Fixing the Flue Vent Storm Collar Leak
The storm collar simply slides over the pipe. To raise the storm collar, the old sealant is scraped off. The storm collar is raised to remove any sealant below the collar and to inspect the flashing cone / vent pipe junction.
The flashing cone was sealed to the vent pipe with metal foil HVAC tape. The metal tape looked to be in good condition, and after 10 years, appeared to be permanently fixed to the pipe. We therefore decided to leave the metal foil tape in place.
Old Vent Sealant
I expected the old sealant would have to be scraped off the with a 5-in-1 tool. Much to our surprise, the old sealant around the storm collar fell away in a single long ribbon! This stuff wasn’t doing anything to prevent rain leaking in! The old sealant was very flexible – like a large rubber band – but lacked any and all adhesion to the metal collar and vent pipe.
The interior side of the old sealant (where it met the metal surfaces) was weathered in sections with clear signs of water/dirt stains. It’s obvious this wasn’t a water-tight seal.
Reseal the Storm Collar
A bead of the Rutland 500°F RTV High Heat Silicone Sealant was applied just above the flashing cone, the storm collar slid down the pipe and back into the place, then a liberal amount of RTV sealant applied to the storm collar. The roofer in this photo is roped off with a safety harness around his waist and thighs. He’s also wearing Cougar Paws roofing boots.
Roof vent with new RTV sealant on the storm collar.
The Flue Vent Still Leaks!
The next time it rained the roof vent still leaked. The leak was no worse, but no better. The storm collar wasn’t the source of my leak.
The roofer said there was severe rusting at the rain cap that couldn’t be seen from the ground. This isn’t normal for galvanized pipe. The rust was significant for a 10 year old installation.
I e-mail this and other photos to a Hart & Cooley, Inc. representative explaining the leak and failed repair. The technician rain water could be getting inside the double-wall pipe, or water could be channeling down the vertical pipe seam. The best option is to replace the pipe and rain cap; the quick fix would be to apply silicone sealant to the vertical pipe seams. I opted for a total replacement.
The total cost of this repair was the minimum $200 fee for a service call by the roofer. While the roofer was up there, I also had the other PVC pipe boot replaced that wasn’t done earlier in the year as a preventive measure.
Replace the Roof Flue Vents
Due to the corrosion and the rain water leak still not being fixed, I decided to replace the roof vents. See Part 3 for details.
Thanks for reading,