Laid much like lead, zinc roofs are laid in bays, typically with standing seam joints. Zinc should last for 50 years or more.

Zinc roofs can be laid to very low pitches, down to 3º depending on the type of jointing seam used.

Zinc can also be laid over insulation boards on top of an existing felt roof. A special vented plastic grid is laid below the zinc. Otherwise, zinc sheet can be laid over timber sarking. However, like lead, the space below the sarking should be vented and a building paper used to allow the zinc to slide a little.

The system of fixing zinc sheets is to form a ‘standing seam’. Zinc clips are then fixed back to the sarking and crimped over the standing seam. This allows each sheet to expand and contract. If the sheets are not fixed or vented correctly, atmospheric or thermal pumping can occur with changes in temperature. This is more of a problem on high roofs, where there can be very high wind pressure. Special vented joints can help to prevent this.

Metal tile roofs can be made to look like zinc, and are likely to be cheaper but not as long-lasting.

New zinc roof being laid. The new zinc will be shiny at first but will soon weather down to a grey, lead-like finish.

Professional help recommended?

If the flat roof is covering a large part of your building and needs major repair or replacement, get a professional survey before proceeding.

Who pays?

Roof repairs are normally a common responsibility.

406 305 Under One Roof

Ask for help from our team of tenement experts

Managing and maintaining a tenement building can be difficult. Under One Roof offers a free enquiry service that allows you to ask specific questions relating to your building.

Ask an expert
Newsletter
Privacy policy
Terms of service

Mid ceiling

Below ground level

Your tenement may have a basement, sometimes used for living accommodation or sometimes used for storage, cellars or wash-houses. These buildings will often also have a 'dunny' between the basement…

905 800 Under One Roof

Energy efficiency improvements

Adding insulation and draught-proofing can save money and the planet but in…

2560 1707 Under One Roof

Insulating traditional solid walls

Recent research suggests that traditional solid stone or brick walls provide better…

2560 1707 Under One Roof

Flat roofs

Flat roofs can be found on buildings of all ages. They can…

406 305 Under One Roof

Asphalt flat roofs

On stone tenements, asphalt roofs are found on: 'high backs' - raised backcourt…

406 305 Under One Roof
Start typing
Privacy Preferences

When you visit our website, it may store information through your browser from specific services, usually in the form of cookies. Here you can change your Privacy preferences. It is worth noting that blocking some types of cookies may impact your experience on our website and the services we are able to offer.

Our website uses cookies, mainly from 3rd party services. Define your Privacy Preferences and/or agree to our use of cookies.