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Slate


charlieb
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Plenty of negative to say about this roof but I have a few questions:

1. What is the growth on the slate and what are the effects?

2. Why is the underside powdery? Other than the obvious "It is deteriorating".

3. I do not know the age but does this look like a lesser grade of material? I believe the classifications would be S2or S3 in that case.

4. Any other comments?

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1. What is the growth on the slate and what are the effects?
It's mostly a type of lichen. It would have more of an effect on more common types of roofing materials - very little on slate.

2. Why is the underside powdery? Other than the obvious "It is deteriorating".
It is a soft-vain slate quarried mostly from Bangor and Pen Argyl in Northampton County, PA. It is quite porous as compared to slate quarried in most other areas (all slate is porous). The U-shaped discoloration on the surface and the powdering underneath is from many decades of moisture absorption and to a lesser degree, leaching of gypsum to the surface.

3. I do not know the age but does this look like a lesser grade of material? I believe the classifications would be S2or S3 in that case.
Please remove that "classification" system from your vocabulary. That is a grading system invented by folks that made it up to sell an ASTM standard. It's completely inappropriate to use to determine the age or remaining life of a slate roof.

4. Any other comments?
What's the age of the house, the slope of the roof, the headlap, the type of nails and percentage of slates needing immediate replacement?
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The stove is a Chambers. I remember a thread about the O'Keefe and Merritt stoves (or some sort) a while back. Like the thread mentioned, a portion of the stove was running all the time. The owner was taking the stove but leaving the red cast iron sink/counter.

This was only the second or third slate roof I've inspected. I "felt" the slate was original. I also believed the system as a whole was in trouble. The majority to the roof coverings are now asphalt shingles. If you look closely, not all what can be seen from the street is even slate. The back and one side has been replaced. The carriage house has a lovely metal roof.

The "dual agent" had referred a $250 inspector for the house.

It was an interesting day. Quite unusual for me. Most of the housing I inspect is less than 25 years old. Old to me is from the 30s or 40s.

Thanks for the info. I have a roofer I've referred for other than modern shingles but it turned out he has retired. The office tracked him down today and found the sons have filled his shoes. I'm sure the client will get all that he needs from the boys.

By the way, I feel for ya Bill. As much as I enjoyed the day....I would not want it to be the norm.

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It was an interesting day. Quite unusual for me. Most of the housing I inspect is less than 25 years old. Old to me is from the 30s or 40s.

By the way, I feel for ya Bill. As much as I enjoyed the day....I would not want it to be the norm.

Same here. Old is pre-70's for me. I imagine just moving around with all that clutter in the way drove you bonkers.

Glass bowl sinks - do not leave the room with taps flowing. [:-yuck]

BTW, if we could move that house to a lot up here, we could ask 3 times that price. View lot, try 1.3 M.

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In our cities with some size the large old stuff holds some value. The 12 to 2000 sf stuff sit locked in a $80 sf range. Smaller stuff goes to pot and hits the 10 to 50k price. That house is in poor condition so the price has dropped in value.

That house in a rural city would go for 200k.

Here in the big city of Jackson (5 - 600 metro) the house would be in a part of town that does not turn over and is well maintained. I would guess it would go for 750 or more. I've never inspected anything in that area.

The sweet spot is 180 to 250 right now. These houses are in the 2000 sf range and are sloppily built. Lipstick on a pig.

You get a lot of sf for your money down here but the quality and attention to detail is poor.

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This is the bad thing about the forums. I don't know if you are offended, slapping yourself on the forehead in a DUH moment or being snide.

Of course, if I had not already showed my ignorance, you would not know if I was being condescending.

Not a correction just that I had to stop and take note of it. To me it was a hot red chunk of cast iron. It was a first for me. We simply don't have a lot of OLD stuff like you northern folk.

The forth "eye" acting as a pit to keep stuff warm in is just odd.

On another note, my client was not so interested in the performance of the HVAC systems. They, present owners of an old home, intended to do as everyone else with these old homes does. Freestanding gas space heaters and window units serve are the primary sources of conditioned air. The houses are sieves.

The furnace in the photo is only 6 years old.

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  • 1 month later...

By the way, I feel for ya Bill. As much as I enjoyed the day....I would not want it to be the norm.

Give me an old beauty like that any day over yet another rubber stamped McMansion/BiLevel/Ranch. Being unfamiliar makes it a lot more daunting. Get used to it and your head doesn't spin so much. Course it helps if you grew up in one and doing renovations of them.

In general, for slate, 100 is typically a young roof if the hamfisted monkeys have been kept away. So for a house around 100 -150, if it's not original it's going to look pretty new.

That one looks to be suffering those overhanging trees more than anything.

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