The Ultimate 2024 Guide for Fixing a Leaky Roof - GLRE

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Have you ever walked into your office or store after heavy rain to find puddles on the floor from a leaky glass roof? Only a few things are more frustrating or disruptive to business.

But before you call in a contractor, know that you may be able to fix that leaky roof yourself with some simple tools and techniques. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the common causes of glass roof leaks and show you step-by-step how to diagnose and repair them for good.

With a little time and elbow grease, you can have your glass roof restored to leak-free operation and avoid the headaches and hassles of water damage. So grab your toolbox, and let’s get that roof fixed!

Identifying Roof Leaks: 3 Signs You Have a Leaky Glass Roof

The following are the three major indicators of a leaky roof:

  1. Drips and water trails
  2. Pooled water
  3. Stains and corrosion

1. Drips and Water Trails

Are you looking to fix water dripping from the roof despite no rain outside? Pay attention to where the drips originate to determine possible entry points for repairs. Even a seemingly minor issue, like a roof leaking into the attic, can lead to major damage if left unfixed.

Drips and Water Trails

2. Pooled Water

Standing water on the floor is never a good sign. Check if the water has accumulated near any seals, frames, or panels in the roof to locate the source of the leak. Mop up any pooled water immediately to avoid slips and falls and to prevent the growth of mould or mildew.

3. Stains and Corrosion

Water stains, mineral deposits and rust on frames, seals or sills indicate areas where water has been entering and exiting for some time. These stains and corrosion also weaken the materials, allowing more water to penetrate. In this case, a repair or replacement of damaged components is often necessary.

If you notice any of these issues with your glass roof, it’s best to have a professional evaluate the situation. They can determine the underlying cause of the leaks and recommend solutions to fix your roof once and for all so you can get back to enjoying the views and natural light that a glass roof provides. However, if you are interested in a DIY roof leak repair, you should familiarise yourself with the cause before embarking on any procedure.

3 Common Causes of Glass Roof Leaks

If your glass roof has started leaking, chances are it’s due to one of the following roof leakage causes:

  1. Faulty or deteriorated sealant
  2. Damaged or broken glass
  3. Incorrect installation

1. Faulty or Deteriorated Sealant

The sealant, caulk, or gasket that bonds the glass panels together and seals out moisture can break down after years of exposure. Once compromised, water finds its way through the cracks. Resealing or replacing damaged sealant is often an easy fix.

Tip: We recommend checking out our step-by-step guide on how to reseal windows. The steps are just about the same for glass roofs.

2. Damaged or Broken Glass

Roof leaks happen from impact damage, stress fractures, missing roof tiles, or imperfections in the glass. Even a small crack allows water to penetrate. In many cases, you’ll need to replace the damaged glass panels to solve the issue.

3. Incorrect Installation

If the glass roof wasn’t installed properly in the first place, it’s doomed to leak. Flashing that is not securely connected or sloped, or panels that don’t have enough overlap, leave gaps for water to get in. You’ll need a professional glazier to reinstall the roof to correct these problems.

The key to stopping water leaking from roofs is identifying the underlying cause. Once you find the source of the leaks, you can implement the right solution and prevent future water damage so you can get back to enjoying your space. Check out some temporary fixes to a leaking glass roof below!

4 Temporary Glass Roof Repairs You Can Do Now

If you’ve got water pouring through your glass roof, you need to act fast to prevent damage.

Here are some solutions for a temporary fix that you can try right away until you get a professional roof repair:

  1. Apply waterproof tape.
  2. Use a sealant.
  3. Apply roofing tar.
  4. Cover with plastic sheeting.

1. Apply waterproof tape.

For small cracks or holes in a glass roof, high-quality waterproof tape can provide a quick solution. Make sure the area is clean and dry, then apply strips of tape over the leak, smoothing out any air bubbles. Press firmly so the tape adheres well.

Apply waterproof tape

This method works best on small problem areas. For larger cracks, you’ll need a more heavy-duty solution.

2. Use a sealant.

Clear epoxy or silicone sealants designed for glass can also patch up minor leaks and cracks. Clean and dry the area, then apply the sealant over the crack or hole, smoothing it out with a putty knife or spatula so it seals the entire area. Let it dry as directed.

Note: Sealants may not last long-term but can buy you some time until you’re able to opt for a permanent solution.

3. Apply roofing tar.

In an emergency, roofing tar can prevent further water damage to your building’s interior. Spread the tar around the leak, covering an area slightly larger than the crack or hole. Press down firmly so it adheres well, then smooth it out.

While roofing tar is quite effective at stopping leaks, it dents your building’s aesthetics and should be considered a temporary solution. We recommend scheduling permanent roof repairs or replacements as soon as possible.

4. Cover with plastic sheeting.

As a last resort, you can cover the affected area with clear plastic sheeting, securely taping it in place to divert water away from the leak. This is not an ideal solution and should only be used in an emergency until proper repairs can be made, as it can further damage the roof.

Any of these temporary fixes should give you enough time to call a professional to evaluate your water-damaged roof and perform necessary repairs or replacements. So, what do long-term fixes to leaky roofs look like? Find out below!

3 Permanent Glass Roof Leak Repair Solutions

If the leak in your glass roof is persistent, it’s time to consider permanent solutions to prevent future damage. These fixes aim to seal up cracks for good and reinforce the structure of your roof.

Here are some permanent flat roof leak repair solutions that apply to other glass roof types as well:

  1. Replacement glass panels
  2. Upgraded sealants
  3. Reinforced roof frames

1. Replacement Glass Panels

The most effective way to stop leaks from cracked or broken glass panes is to replace them entirely. New, high-performance glass panels that match your existing roof will restore its integrity and prevent leaks before they start. For the best results, hire a professional glazier to remove and replace the damaged panes.

2. Upgraded Sealants

If leaks are coming from around the edges of glass panels or framing, improved sealants or caulking may do the trick. A glazier can strip out old, failing sealant and apply a durable, weather-resistant sealant designed specifically for glass roofing. These products form a watertight bond between glass panels and roof frames to eliminate leaks for years.

3. Reinforced Roof Frames

Sometimes, leaks occur due to issues with the metal frames that hold the glass panels in place. Improperly installed or deteriorating frames won’t provide adequate support or sealing for the roof. In these cases, roofing contractors may need to repair or replace damaged portions of the frame to restore stability and weatherproofing to the structure. For persistent leaks or signs of extensive frame damage, a total replacement of the roof frame is recommended.

Permanent solutions can end leaks in glass roofs by addressing issues with glass panels, seals, and roof framing. While DIY fixes may provide temporary relief, professional repairs and replacements are the only way to guarantee a watertight, long-lasting solution. With the proper repairs in place, you can enjoy the benefits of a glass roof without worrying about leaks or water damage. But proper glass roof care doesn’t stop at repairs; you should take precautions against future damage. 

Preventing Future Roof Leaks and Damage

Consider the following to prevent future damage to your roofing:

  1. Regular maintenance
  2. Protect vulnerable areas
  3. Avoid roof traffic
  4. Proper cleaning techniques

1. Regular Maintenance

To avoid future leaks and damage, be sure to perform regular maintenance on your glass roof. Clear debris like leaves and sticks from gutters, drains, and valleys at least twice a year to prevent clogs that lead to water accumulation. Also, inspect and repair or replace any damaged flashing around chimneys, roof vents, skylights, and the edge of the roof.

2. Protect Vulnerable Areas

Waterproof any areas where the glass roof connects to vertical surfaces like walls or parapets. Seal and re-caulk around vents, chimneys and the edges of the roof, especially at the eaves where the glass roof meets the gutter. Make sure any attic vents are also properly sealed and covered. These entry points are easy access for water and leaks.

3. Avoid Roof Traffic

Walking on a glass roof, even occasionally, can lead to scratches, cracks and leaks over time. Only go up on the roof when necessary for inspections or repairs. If you do need to access the roof, wear soft-soled shoes and walk carefully to avoid damage. Also, place protective pads under ladders or equipment like air conditioning units.

Avoid Roof Traffic

4. Proper Cleaning Techniques

When cleaning your glass roof, use a mild detergent and soft cloths, sponges or squeegees. Avoid abrasive cleaners and scrubbers, which can scratch the surface. Rinse the roof thoroughly when done to remove any remaining dirt or cleaning product residue. For tough stains like rust or paint, use a commercial glass stain remover according to the directions.

Following these preventative steps will help reduce your risk of future leakage, keeping your glass roof in top working condition. Regular inspections, especially after severe weather, will also allow you to identify and address any potential issues early on before major damage occurs. For a more permanent fix, always contact a professional glazier to repair your glass roofs.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do if my roof is leaking?

If you discover a leak in your roof space, it’s critical to act swiftly. Place a container under the drip to catch water and move valuables out of harm’s way. Then, promptly call a professional roofer to assess the damage and carry out necessary repairs to prevent further water damage to your building.

How do I stop my roof from dripping?

To temporarily stop your roof from dripping, locate the leak’s source and clear the area of any debris. Apply roofing tar to the affected spot, cover with PE (polyethene) plastic for added protection, or secure new shingles if applicable. For larger areas, use tarps and seal any joints to thwart further water ingress.

How serious is a roof leak?

A roof leak can range from a minor issue to a serious emergency. While a small leak in roofs might not require immediate action, it shouldn’t be ignored as leaks can worsen over time, potentially causing extensive damage and incurring higher repair costs. Prompt attention can prevent escalation.


By following a few simple steps, you can seal up your leaky roof for good. Sure, a repair isn’t as thorough as a full replacement, but when done right, it can add years of life to your leaking roof. Just take your time, use quality materials, and follow the process we laid out; in no time, your building will be free from those pesky leaks and drips.

Remember, if the leaks persist or you see signs of major structural damage, don’t hesitate to call in a professional glazier. A new glass roof is a big investment, but it’s worth it to protect your property and keep your business or workspace comfortable.

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