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Slate roof renewals and re-roofing in Melbourne …How do you know if your existing slate roof can’t be restored and needs replacing?
Your roof will be suffering leaks from similar problems described in the slate roof restoration section. As well as the problems described, your roof slates are also delaminating and are very soft. These soft slates absorb water and slowly leak inside your roof cavity – many times causing small stains on your ceilings.
When your slates are soft they don’t just stop there – they continue on and if left long enough, they’ll simply begin to fall apart.
At this stage, or preferably well before this stage, you’ll need a slate re-roof to avoid major leaking problems.
Wait too long and the damage to your homes interior can be quite substantial when a decent storm hits.
Your roof slates – are they soft and flaky? If they are, you need to re-roof
By far, the very best way to determine the condition of the slates on your roof is to get inside the ceiling cavity and inspect the underside of the slate. What do you see? If they’re good quality nice hard slates you’ll most likely see the back of the slate is a nice even color. The slate will also be uniform and even in texture, with no or very small signs of flaking or slivers of slate peeling away.
If on the other hand the slates are going soft and wearing out, you’ll see the flaking and peeling and also a white powdery substance on the underside of the slates and in some cases on the ceiling floor itself. This is a definite sign that your slate is very soft and if not already doing so, is going to cause some serious leaking problems very soon.
To back this up, if you think your slate is soft, grab a sharpish type tool like a screw driver. Firmly push it into the back of the slate and drag it across like you’re trying to score a line in the slate. If the slates are really soft you may find the screwdriver just effortlessly goes straight through them. You may find that big pieces of slate just easily peel away. Either result isn’t really good and is a sure sign that the roof slates are on the way out.
Another easy test to determine the quality of your slate is to simply give it a few taps with your knuckles. Soft slate will give a dull thud sound like tapping wet cardboard… you may even knock a hole right through it.
Good slate will give a ring like sound – like a bell – and there will be no way of you could put a hole through it with your knuckles.
If your slates are soft, they will eventually need replacing
When the slates on your roof are delaminating and soft, it’s only a matter of time before they’ll leak and need to be replaced. Depending on the degree of softness, some roofs may hang on for a few years but then again they may be leaking in a spot that’s not noticeable and already causing damage.
There are other roofs where the slate is really at the end and the next good rainstorm is going to cause a lot of damage and problems. If the roof slates are showing signs of flaking, delaminating and going soft, it’s always more economical to replace the roof rather than try to restore it.