Throughout our time we have come across a lot of very bad jobs when it comes to slate roofing. This is simply down to the contractor not having the experience and knowledge to complete the job. Due to the amount of bad jobs it has giving slate roofing a very poor name, so we have devised a guide to help you see that a properly installed slate roof will not just look stunning but last a lifetime.
Don’t let price dictate your choice
Its human instinct to be drawn in by the cheapest price, but this is not always a good idea. Compare all the quotes there shouldn’t ever be much difference but if there is a big drop from one company you need to really consider the following
- What difference in materials
- Are they paying for insurance
- What are they not doing that everyone else is
Ultimately the choice is only ever yours
Before you have contacted companies you will have done a small amount of research into what you want, so don’t let the contractor dictate to you. A lot of smaller companies try to push customers into the “all slate is the same” which in fact is incorrect there is a wide range to choose from. Just think you were shopping for a car, where do you start normally by researching different models, size of the engine and insurance groups. You would never buy the first car without knowing anything about it. Do the same with you new slate roof because once installed using the correct materials and methods it will last over 100 years.
Signing on the dotted line
At Findley Roofing and Building we cannot stress the importance of a contract. The contract must be signed by both parties and include everything, from money exchanged to the job at hand, but also include any promises made to you never take anyone’s word get in on the contract.
What about headlap?
Again a very important key factor to not only discuss but to look out for on some previous work by the companies. This is where you will spot the most experienced companies. You will find a lot of work done by poor construction work is mainly down to the lack of headlap as they don’t have the knowledge and correct methods for installation.
A well-constructed roof will massively add value to your home, but will keep you safe and sound from all the most extreme weather conditions. This can only be achieved by using correct methods and having not just the knowledge but experience this is because of something called flashings. Flashings serve a very important purpose in helping you stay dry from the rain. This part is very important to get right but when you research how to fit flashing it will comes across as a simple task. Do not let this fool you it still take great care and an eye for detail this is the part that you can simply not afford to rush or get wrong and fix later.
Just like buying a car you shop around, treat your new roofing project in the same manor. Speak to as many companies you feel is adequate. This will only help you understand more and more, meaning you will gain a better understanding of what is to be done and how it is done. After speaking to a few different companies hopefully you will spot the ones that are not best suited for you, meaning poor service and lack of experience.
Slate roofs are not balconies
Slate roofs are what they say they are roofs not balconies meaning they should never be walked on even during installation. A well-built new slate roof would have been constructed through the use of either scaffolding or scaffolding ladders. You will find roofing companies never walk along the tiles as this will weaken them causing damage to not just the roof but tiles may fall and damage anything in the garden. Consider this when getting prices from different companies as the cheapest companies could be saving cost by not using the correct equipment.
What goes under a slate roof?
The inner layer under the slate roof is known as the roof deck and is very important part of the project. When discussing materials you must avoid at all costs plywood and lamented wood for all they are by far the cheapest option and will be suitable for use but will last nowhere near as long as you need it to. Let’s not forget a slate roof has a life expectancy of over 100 years. When companies but a lot of emphasis on the underlay it shows lack of confidence in their own ability and knowledge of slate roof, a slate roof can with stand all elements but if constructed poorly then it will require a lot of underlay.
We hope this helps when selecting your new slate roof, we hope that all the bad jobs do not put you off after all a well contracted slate roof will look stunning all year round, keep you safe and must of all last a very long time. There are still a lot of contractors out there giving the slate roof a bad name, remember to take your time and research as much as you can, any contractor or roofing company will always be happy to answer any questions you have.