The following guide is in imperial feet in inches if you would rather see it metric centimeters Then you can always convert it as you are going along!
I know this has been covered by other posts on the web but most of them don’t actually tell you what you need to know. That is, how to actually layout the roof ready for tiling, without this any roof will either be a mess to look at or even worse it will leak.
Let’s just have a quick look at this roof a bit closer up. What you’re looking at is even tile spacing and the correct overlap of the roof tiles this is essential for any pitch roof with tiles or slates and without this you won’t be tiling any roof worth having.
If you set out the roof wrong you will end up with something like this and apart from its many, many faults the tiles are too stretched in this section causing it to leak and here the stretching because so bad that an extra row of tiles were shoved in. You will be amazed and a I still AM how many roofers and builders fall into this trap.
So let’s not follow them and this is how to tile a roof starting here I’m going to deconstruct this roof and show you how it was created so you can do exactly the same thing with your roof. Take this picture to be your newly stripped roof ready for tiling, making sure that the roof rafters or trusses are fully clean of any splinters or old nails that may ruin the membrane.
The next step is to roll out your chosen under sarking starting at the bottom. This can be for instance a traditional reinforced felt sometimes known as one F or under Tyler’s felt or under Slater’s vote if you’re under slate or a newer breathable membrane such as this here I’ve chosen one F under Tyler’s felt.
Starting at the left or right roll out a length of under sarking and secure one edge with one inch galvanized clout nails. Nail it in firmly but not so hard that it damages or rips the under sarking – gently pull your chosen membrane taut from the other end
However you do not want it tight!
What you’re looking for is a suggestion of sag between the rafters, this is so in the event of water making it past the tiles by breakages or other exceptional weather conditions. The water will be drawn into the dips in the under sarking and down and into the gutters and away. Once you have the desired tautness, fix the other end of the under sarking with some more nails. Then fill in with a few more nails. However there’s no need for too many nails though as the battens you’re going to be putting on later will hold the membrane firmly in place.
Next we need to work out the tile spacing and batten spacing for your roof. This is called the gage and is normally specified by the tile manufacturer or the tile supplier. for my example I’m going to show you the most common for this type of tile. Firstly get two of the roof tiles you will be using and two roofing buttons sometimes known as roofing Laths.
Now place these onto the roof without nailing them, this will mean you can adjust the gaps between the buttons at will. Make sure the tiles are overlapping and that the tile logs are seated and properly hooked on to the top of the buttons. Now set the bottom tile overhang, normally this works out at about 50 millimeters there’s no critical measurement for this but it needs enough overhang so rain water enters the gutters without dribbling down the fascias. This will allow easy gutter cleaning and maintenance should that be required later on.
All the roof tiles should be set into the gutter. Now let’s set the overlap for the tile itself on this smooth gray it’s 75 mm if the tile is sand facing on a windy day. If its prone to moss buildup it may be advisable to increase this overlap to 100 millimeters.
Let’s say the initial spacing for the buttons with a 75 millimeter tile overlap is thirty three. The top of one button to the top of the other this is called the gauge.
– Now fix the battens in place using a galvanized nail that penetrates through the button and into the rafters underneath for a minimum of 40 millimetres to make sure the bottom two buttons are a parallel measure off a reference point like a wall or fascia at the bottom of the roof.
Underneath the under socking now this is the bit a lot of builders and roofers get wrong.
With the bottom to last now fixed in their correct position measure from the top of the button to within 30 millimetres of the apex of the roof. By not putting the tape at the very top you allow a small gap to lay the tile logs into – plus a little bit of extra room so roof expansion or contraction doesn’t damage the tile log.
Should that roof expansion occur, let’s say for example that the distance is four hundred and fifty eight point five centimeters between the end of the tape and the top of the last button as we worked out earlier, the desired space between the battens is thirty three point five centimeters.
So we need to divide 458.5 by 33.5 which leaves us with 13.68. This isn’t a workable figure so we round it up to 14. This means we are going to need fourteen rows of button to tile successfully to the top of the roof now that we know we require the remaining distance of 458.5 cms by fourteen which gives us 32.57 centimeters
So now we know that 32.57 centimeters is the correct gauge for the rest of our buttons.
Read that again and make sure you have it right in your mind!
Every time you lay a new length your roof is now set out and ready for tiling.
If the roof tile is in the UK its traditional to nail every third row from the bottom row of tiles and then the top row. Obviously this may be different in other countries that may be experience different weather conditions. Make sure when nailing your tiles down that it penetrates into the roofing button but not out of the other side as this will damage your new under socking.
if your roof has an edge or verge try to overhang the tiles by 40 to 50 millimetres and always try to space the tile so a high profile part of the tile is on the very edge. This directs any rainwater from dribbling over the edge and onto the walls of the building.
Sometimes a cut may be required to achieve this but again put it on the highest part of the tile and if you’re using a flat profile interlocking tile always try to stagger every course so that the vertical joints do not sit directly above each other.
I hope that has given some help but remember to always use an experienced roofer if you are not confident yourself.
You can follow this video to help you out or you can give us a call and we will help