Replacing Broken Roof Tiles - The Do's and Don'ts

Replacing Broken Roof Tiles

If you spot a cracked or broken tile on your roof, it is essential to address the problem as soon as possible. Without doing so, you risk your roof leaking and the damage getting worse. If water ingress occurs in your property, this could not only damage the contents but also weaken the structure of the building if left untreated for long periods.

If there is just a single tile or a few that you feel need replacing, you may feel confident to do the job yourself. However, irrespective of how many tiles need replacing, because of the potential risk and challenges of working at height, you may wish to consider hiring a professional roofer to carry out the work for you.

If you do wish to go ahead and fix your roof tile by yourself, here are some helpful do's and don't to ensure that you complete the job quickly and easily and don't make any costly mistakes.

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How to source the right tile for your roof

Sourcing the appropriate tile for your roof is the first step. You'll need to find one that's made of the same material and size as those that you already have on the roof, and you should consider checking that the colour and style match your existing roof tiles to blend in seamlessly with your current roof design. There are many different tile types and materials available; if you have any questions and want to ensure that you are choosing the correct tile, please give any of our branches a call, and our experienced staff will be happy to talk through your requirements with you.

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Do ensure you have the right tools for the job

To remove your roof tile, you'll need a brick trowel and a couple of pieces of timber to hold up the tiles that overlap the one that needs to be removed. You shouldn't need to use nails or wire to fix your new one in place as it should slot back in, and the surrounding tiles will hold it. However, if you are in a high wind area, you may wish to take extra measures to secure it.

Do put your personal safety first

You'll need to be able to safely access and remove your broken roof tile to replace it. Make sure that you have a stable and robust ladder that reaches your roof. You could also consider using safety ropes to protect you if you slip, especially if your roof is very steeply pitched. Waiting for a dry day to ensure your roof isn't slippery is also advisable. Falling off your roof can cause severe injuries, and in the worst cases, even death.

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Do ensure your new tile is correctly positioned

When you have slotted the new tile into place, check it is not interfering with any of the surrounding tiles, and it is slotted in correctly in an overlapping position. Your roof tile should be secure, and there shouldn't be any noticeable gaps.

Do check the rest of your roof for signs of damage

While you are up there, it's a good idea to survey the rest of your roof to check for any other potential damage. You may spot other tiles that need replacing or other signs of wear that could become problematic if left untreated. Concrete roofs are particularly susceptible to damage, such as cracking, and delaminating (thinning) as the tiles get older.

Don't assume you've found the source of the leak

If you suspect that a leak in your property has been caused by a leak from your roof, it's vital to ensure that you are sure of where the leak originated from. You might think that by merely repairing the area around the leak, your roof is fixed, but to be sure, it is wise to check the entire roof surface and in particular abutments and flashing such as at party walls and at the base of chimney stacks.

Don't forget to replace roofing felt

Replacing your tiles will hopefully ensure that any leaks in your roof cease immediately. However, there are instances where you will have to go deeper below the surface of the roof. If your replacement tile has not stopped your roof from leaking, it may be that your roofing felt is the issue. Even if roofing felt doesn't seem to be damaged, it could cease to function if it is very old, so make sure you bear this in mind if you've exhausted all options with your tiles.

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Don't be afraid to contact a professional

Even if your tile replacement job seems relatively straightforward, if you are not comfortable doing the work yourself or don't have the correct tools, skills or knowledge to confidently work on your roof, calling a professional is the safest and most sensible option. While this may be a more expensive route, having the peace of mind that the job has been carried out safely, professionally and reducing the stress for you will be well worth the money!

While cracked or broken roof tiles can be annoying, replacing them is quite straightforward. Follow these Do's and Don'ts so ensure that you keep your roof in excellent condition and your home protected with the minimum of hassle to you.

About Roofing stocks a massive range of tiles in all shapes, sizes, and materials for all roof types. If you are looking for a replacement tile for your roof, browse our collection or get in touch with our customer service team for help and advice.

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Where can I find roof slates, roof tiles and roofing materials near me?

You can contact us to discuss and order our wide range of roofing materials in any of our branches listed below or we can deliver nationwide:

Dorking, Surrey branch

Redhill, Surrey branch

Esher, Surrey branch

East Grinstead, West Sussex branch