A 1-in. hole in your roof can let in a gallon of rainwater every minute. And a few gallons can do thousands of dollars of damage. With 30 bucks in materials, you’re ready for almost anything. Minor roof damage can lead to major water damage inside your home. But if you keep a few simple materials on hand, you can seal most roof injuries in just a few minutes. A section of flashing is the perfect patch for smaller holes—often caused by blown-down tree branches. Don’t forget to caulk around the hole. Special roof sealant is best, but any type of caulk is better than nothing. For larger areas, a tarp is the best bandage. But before you spread a tarp, screw plywood over large holes in the roof. Left unsupported, a tarp will sag into a hole, fill with rainwater and possibly leak. If shingles have blown off but there are no holes in the roof, you can lay the tarp directly over the roof sheathing. Stretch the tarp so it lies smoothly over the roof and batten down the entire perimeter (except the ridge). Just a few inches of loose tarp will allow strong winds to drive in rain or rip the tarp to shreds. Use screws and any type of lumber you have on hand to secure the tarp. Whenever possible, extend the tarp over the roof ridge so water won’t flow down and under it. If there’s no way to run the tarp over the ridge, slip sections of flashing under shingles and over the upper edge of the tarp. Then drive nails through both the flashing and the tarp.