What Are The Pros And Cons Of Slate Roofs?

If you’re considering getting slate for your roof, you may be wondering if it’s a worthwhile investment. Well, this elegant stone roofing has a long and storied history. Some of the oldest homes in the nation have their original slate roofs intact.

Slate is the longest-lasting roofing material on the market, prized for its beauty, low maintenance, and durability. Like all roofing materials, however, it does have its drawbacks. So, let’s look at the pros and cons of slate roofs to help you make a decision that’s right for you and your home.

The Pros

Aesthetically Pleasing

Slate roofing has a gorgeous, rustic look which can enhance the look of any architectural style. The tiles are made of 100% natural stone and are available in various colors, sizes, and levels of thickness. Slate also maintains its distinctive appearance throughout its lifespan and will not fade with sun exposure.

Long Lifespan

Slate roofing is the gold standard for long-lasting roofs. While the typical asphalt shingles have an expected lifespan of 15 to 30 years, slate roofs are routinely built to last at least a century. When properly installed and cared for, it’s not uncommon for a slate roof to last 150 years or more.

Older homes dating back to the later 19th and early 20th-century sport original slate tiles on their roofs. Slate is an excellent option if you want to install it on your “forever” home.

Highly Durable

Because slate roofs are made of naturally occurring stone, they’re the most durable roofing materials out there. Slate is relatively unaffected by inclement weather conditions, including high temperatures, high winds, heavy snow, and even hail.

The high density of slate makes it waterproof and resistant to mold and algae. Also, slate is non-combustible and will protect your home from a fire caused by airborne sparks.

Low Maintenance

In addition to its beauty and durability, a slate roof gets picked over other roofing materials because of its low maintenance requirement. You’ll just need to check for broken or loose tiles, repair flashing, keep the gutters clean, and have an annual inspection done by an experienced slate roofer.

Increase Home Value

The beauty and longer-than-usual lifespan of slate roofs create lasting value and allow a home to stand out in the competitive real estate market. With a slate roof, you can sell your home at a much higher value than a comparable with another roofing material.

The Cons

High Cost

The biggest detraction of slate roofing is its cost. Slate costs more to manufacture and requires specially trained roofers to install, which drives the price up. A fully installed slate roof can cost two to five times more than conventional roofing materials. While the long lifespan and low maintenance generally close the gap, slate may not be a cost-effective option, especially if you’re planning to sell your home in the near future.

Extremely Heavy

Slate tiles are incredibly heavy, weighing between 800 to 1,000 pounds per square of roofing material. For comparison, a square of asphalt shingles weighs only about 250 pounds. The weight means some homes need extra reinforcement before the roof can be installed.

Despite its high cost and other quirks, slate is an excellent roofing material for residential homes. If you’re interested in installing a slate roof on your home, contact Pinnacle Roofing to learn more about this roofing material or get an estimate for your roofing project. We’re dedicated to providing high-quality roofing services in New York’s Capital Region and Southern Vermont.

Call Us Today