18 Facts about Natural Slate Roofing

Posted By On 21 Jan 2019

Glendyne quarry, the producers of North Country Unfading Black natural roofing slate.

1) Natural roofing slate was formed 400 million to 550 million years ago and is a microcrystalline fine-grained metamorphic rock

2) Slate has been used for roofing for over one thousand years!

3) Slate roof tiles are a hard material and known for its durability

4) Slate is tested under ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) to determine its life expectancy. An S1 graded roofing slate will last 75 plus years.

5) Unlike man-made products which are engineered and created in factories to create the appearance of slate, a natural slate still requires man power and is split by hand.

Glendyne employee breaking slate block down into more manageable pieces to be further split by hand.

6) Slate colors are derived from its mineral and chemical composition. Color options include black, gray, green, purple, mottled purple and red with unfading and semi-weathering characteristics.

Unfading Mottled Purple and Green natural roofing slate piece. No two pieces will be the same!

7) Natural slate roof tiles are unaffected by freeze/thaw cycles

8) Slate is environmentally safe as it lasts over 75 years, unlike imitation slate made of plastic or rubber that fills up landfills when it reaches its life expectancy 20-30 years.

9) A slate roof adds value to your home.

10) Slate is non-combustible and fireproof.

11) A home/building must be structurally sound to hold the weight of a slate roof which is heavy and depending on the thickness will weigh 650 to 2,500 Lbs per square. One square will cover 100 square feet.

12) A natural slate roof is installed with copper nails or hooks. Slates produced in North America come with two nail holes punched for a 3” headlap.

13) A slate roof isn’t just for churches and mansions, it can be found on courthouses, universities, museums, consulate houses, hotels, castles, train stations, libraries, country clubs, farms, air force bases and even sheds!

14) A slate roof is resistant to chemical pollutants and acid rain.

15) Slates can be hand trimmed to a variety of shapes (diamond point, fish scale, hexagon, clipped corner, gothic and scalloped) which are often used on patterned slate roofs.

Floral pattern on a building in Toronto with North Country Unfading Black and North Country Unfading Green natural slates. The pattern slates were individually trimmed by hand.

16) Slate patterns can be geometric patterns, dates, floral, word or names. No other roofing product can replicate this!

17) A slate roof shingle/tile can be ordered single size or random width or multiply sizes and widths to create a graduated slate roof.

Fake slate failing on roof

18) Unlike synthetic/fake slate products (plastic, rubber,) that have only been on the market for 20 odd years, a natural slate roof has proven performance on rooftops….remember they have been used for over a thousand years!

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