Natural slate roofing

Natural slate roofing

Slate has been popular from early times with competition from lighter, cheaper, easier artificial alternatives like asphalt shingles and asbestos cement slates. The search for the perfect slate substitute still occurs to boost and replenish alternatives. Modern slate substitutes can be optional replacements or extensions for a natural slate roof or an ersatz slate installation from early times. OHJ has made a list of state of the art products, materials, and manufacturers in this regard.

The Pros

Slate being a natural stone product has a unique, beautiful appearance and longevity. Here are some reasons why slate roofing tiles are popular among home-owners.

Despite its high price, slate has a big longevity and can last a long time compared to other roofing alternatives. Before making any decision you can approach one of the best Dallas roofing contractors, who can help you in the best possible manner.

The longevity of roofing slate depends on type, thickness, method of attachment, slope and other factors. But as slate is of long duration, replacements and restorations are not needed till an extended period. Leaks can be repaired, flashings replaced, or faulty repair work redone. Historic slate roofs are common in the US but are also in fear of replacements or restoration thanks to the interests of roof contractors and consultants.

Slate is fire-resistant and is touted as ‘one of the most fire-resistant roofs that exist’ by the Durable Slate Roofing Company. It comes in good use to prevent fires from fireworks sparks, wildfires.

The National Slate Association (NSA) and National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) recently tested slate for its fire-resistance according to standard fire test methods. There are Dallas contractors who can help you in choosing the best roof.

The testing was inspired by the change International Building Code (IBC) statement showed in the alteration from combustible to non-combustible roof deck to give slate Class A fire resistance accord. The test utilized normal 1/4 inch thick slate shingles on 1/2 inch plywood roof deck and got Class A rating.

While favorable test results should assert the fire-resistivity of slate roof assemblies, the NSA and NRCA however exempts slate roof coverings from further testing.

Environment friendliness

Slate is a metamorphic rock composed of clay and is naturally derived from sedimentary rock formations in the earth’s crust. It is strong, lasts long, beautiful and green for the home. Slate has many advantages and can be used for roof, wall, floor or decorations.

The Cons

Slate is pricey besides being tough to install. Slate roofing tiles are also fragile and complicated in the repair of damaged tiles.

Slate can be heavy, overbearing and also breakable such that walking on it is difficult complicating things like rooftop maintenance and cleaning.

Lack of information about slate can also be a deterring factor to its installation. Home owners should ask for experience from contractors and their knowledge about slate. Well installed roofs can last long time compared to the vulnerability of poor ones.

The contractors should be knowledgeable about slate roofs while home owners can also learn about them on the internet and get ideas on materials, supplies and installation techniques.

Slate roofing tiles weigh around 800 to 1500 pounds per square (100 square feet). So the residence needs to be evaluated from structural standpoint before slate roof installation.

How thick is roofing slate?

Standard roofing slate is 1/4 inch thick. Slate is splittable by hand, hammer or chisel and thus can vary 1/16 inch in either direction. Slate can also have higher thickness like 3/8" to 1/2", 1/2" to 3/4" or even 3/4" to 1" and hence expensive.

What weights should be taken into account when considering natural slate?

Weight of nominal 3/16 inch slate is 7 to 8 pounds per square feet. 3 layers of asphalt shingles create a total combined weight of 7 pounds. Heavy weights should be considered in roof installation at the design or re-roofing stage.

Slate is fragile so walking on them is discouraged like when installing an AC. Replacement tiles that are a perfect match are difficult to find besides the high cost of slate roofing tiles. Slate tiles can cost $1000 to $4000 per square or even $6000 to $8000 per square. So slate roofing is huge investment, about five times other materials but can also last longer.

Vermont slates have high longevity and the picture shows a slate roof in good, durable condition.

Such roofs should be maintained, not replaced.

Such roofing requires proper maintenance and can last for long period. Even inspectors unaware of the composition and source of slates would not want to condemn a Vermont slate roof.