Robert Lamoureux | Vinyl patio cover needs drainage help

Robert Lamoureux
Robert Lamoureux

Question: Hi Robert. You have helped me several times in the past and I am hoping you will have a solution to my current issue. My 10-year-old vinyl patio cover accumulates water after it rains and there is nowhere for that water to drain.  

I now have an area where the beams meet together that is leaking. I have used flex seal without success. I’m tempted to drill a pilot hole to release the water, but I’m afraid that will create a bigger problem. Do you have a recommendation to fix this issue? As always, thank you for your help.  

— Mary S. 

Answer: Mary, great pictures. This is what I thought: The flashing on the top was not integrated into the stucco. What they need to do is break open the stucco just above the patio roof line by 12 inches and install a Z bar and wall-to-deck flashing.  

This is very common with patio covers. The installers don’t want to spend the time to do it correctly and just install a surface-mounted flashing that doesn’t work. The water is migrating behind the stucco and down into your home. Good luck. 

Robert Lamoureux has more than 40 years of experience as a general contractor, with separate licenses in electrical and plumbing contracting. He owns IMS Construction Inc. in Valencia. His opinions are his own, not necessarily those of The Signal. Opinions expressed in this column are not meant to replace the recommendations of a qualified contractor after that contractor has made a thorough visual inspection. Email questions to Robert at [email protected].         

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