What Is the Biggest Problem with Slate Roofs?

As a homeowner, you get pleasure from living in a beautiful home. One of the largest items that lend character to your property is its roof. A roof can add to the curb appeal while also enhancing the architectural style of the home. It is an investment that you may only have to make once in your lifetime. At Slate Roofing Indianapolis we have witnessed how discerning clients love their slate roofs because of the dimensional look they add to roofs while lasting for decades or more.

Photo of a slate tile roof
Image by Tania Van den Berghen

If you are considering installing a slate roof on your home, there are certain points you should take into account. First is that it’s a natural material that comes from metamorphic rock. This has been taken and cut into thin pieces.

Here are some of the benefits if you choose a slate roof:

  • Durability: If installed correctly, they should last 4-6 times longer than any other roof type.
  • Style: They’re really very beautiful.
  • Fire resistant: One less thing to worry about.
  • Eco-friendly: This is because it’s made from natural rock

However, slate is also a roofing material that has certain issues associated with its installation. Let’s see what these are.


Slate is one of the most expensive roofing materials around, making this one of its biggest downsides. When you compare the cost of installing slate with that of almost any other roofing option, the slate will always come in at the highest cost.


Installing slate means you will be installing a roofing system that is heavier than almost any other roofing material. Before deciding to have a slate roof installed, call your roofer to have a look at the structure of your property. You may have to reinforce it in order to accommodate the weight of slate. Add this to the cost of already expensive materials.

Difficult to Install

If you get several quotes from roofers regarding the installation of your new slate roof, you may want to look at more than their labor cost and ask them about their technical expertise with slate roofs. A slate roof installation is more labor-intensive and time-consuming than any other roof since each piece needs to be carefully shaped and cut to fit precisely.


Once installed, the slate can resist the impact of hail and wind. However, this does not mean it is impervious to breakage. Once the slate pieces are cut and shaped to fit on your roof, they become more fragile. This makes walking on them a dangerous activity. Repairs will cost more with slate roofs.

Technical Repairs

It’s always important to make sure your home’s roof is in proper working order. But no matter how much you take care of a slate roof, there are instances in which some of the pieces may break.

When this happens, you have to call a roofer who is experienced with slate. They will need to cut and shape the required pieces to fill in the gaps on the roof. At the same time, make sure not to cause any further damage to the surrounding pieces. This is definitely not a repair job that an inexperienced homeowner can tackle.

Having a slate roof is a difficult decision to make but once installed, you can definitely enjoy it for many years to come.

Tre Pryor, Realtor

Tre Pryor is the leading real estate expert in the city of Louisville. He is a multi-million dollar producer and consistently ranks in the top 1% of Louisville Realtors for homes sold. Tre Pryor has the highest possible rating—5.0 stars on Google—by his clients and is routinely interviewed by the local NBC news. Tre Pryor is a member of the RE/MAX Hall of Fame.