Slate has long been used as a roofing material because of its durability, resistance to hail, and ability to resist fire. Slate is commonly used in buildings such as churches, country clubs, and new homes Sydney. Slate comes in many different colours, grades, sizes and weights. Slate does need to be repaired regularly, even though it has a long life. Check for any cracks or brittleness. For a particular roof type like slate, you may need a professional who is experienced in repairing slate roofs if you find you have a leak.
Slates roofs require particular techniques and a great amount of care to repair due to the way they are constructed. Individual pieces of slate are joined together by nails. If the nail is hammered in too tightly, the slate will become pinched, or cracks can appear. There is no room for error when installing or fixing slate roofs. Other things that can impact on the condition of a slate roof are roof slope, condensation in the interior of the house, mineral deposits, moss, roof framing, and the quality of the installation.
Nearly all slate roofs have some kind of defect, whether it be slate damage, poor flashing installation, or some other mechanical defect. These can cause leaks, especially during heavy rain periods, windy rainfalls, or rain build up due to ice blocks in winter.
Assessing the Roof
If you think your slate roof needs fixing, obtain the services of a professional roof expert for a consultation. This is an important part of slate roof repair, so don’t rush it. Once the problem is fully understood, the roofer can tell you exactly what is wrong, how to fix it, and how much it will cost. Because slate roofs have a long life, it is better to repair them than replace them. Because slate roofs are relatively expensive, it’s better to have a professional do the repairs rather than doing it yourself.
Starting Slate Roof Repair
If you do decide to perform the repairs yourself, you’ll need some equipment: extension roof access ladders, safety goggles, work gloves, hammer, replacement slate, nail ripper, nail set, slate hook and scrap piece of lumber. Remember that slate is very slippery when wet, so be very careful when up on the roof.
To begin with, every broken or misshapen slate needs to be replaced. Make sure you are wearing work gloves, then use the nail rippers to prise the nails out of the slates. Then you can remove the slate and put a new one in the gap. Cut the new slate so that it fits, then place it in gently, lowering it into the space with the slate hook. Use a temporary wedge to stop other slates being broken. This process can then be repeated for all the other slates that need replacing.