Common Problems with Slate Roofs

From faulty repairs to improper installations.

Slate roofs can last a very long time, especially when the initial installation is performed by expert slate roofers, but get one or two details wrong, and that new slate roof wont last its intended lifespan. Furthermore, routine maintenance on slate roofs should be just that – routine. Repairs should be straightforward and simple. In other words, if a broken or damaged slate is found, it should be replaced with the closest possible matching slate, using a slate hook.

Common Slate Roof Installation Problems Include:

  • Improper headlap
  • Improper sidelap
  • Nailing the slate too tightly or too loosely
  • lack of cant strip
  • starter slate upside down
  • for a more complete list, click here.

Common Slate Roof Repair Problems:

  • Not using hooks
  • Face nailed slate
  • Damaging the adjacent slate during repair
  • Using bibs that can rust or fall out
  • Gluing, tarring, caulking slates.
  • Gluing, tarring or inappropriately caulking flashings.

Common or routine maintenance that should be performed annually:

  • Replace broken, damaged worn out slate using slate hooks.
  • Check and reseal the ridges and hips as necessary
  • Inspect flashings like chimney, valley, shed and counter flashing.
Common Problems With Slate Roofs