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Lead used on Marley Tile Roofs.

The Use of Lead in Tile Roofing

Lead has been utilized in roofing for centuries due to its durability and pliability. In fact, it remains one of the most common roofing accessory materials to this day. One of the primary applications for lead in roofing is in concrete and clay tile roofing.

Tile roofing is a popular roofing choice due to its aesthetic appeal, longevity, and resistance to the elements. Lead is often used in tile roofing to ensure the tiles stay in place and to prevent leakage.

How Lead is Used in Tile Roofing

Lead is used in a variety of ways in tile roofing. One of the most common is for flashings. Flashing is a flat and thin material, usually, metal, used to prevent water from entering the openings in a roof where it starts, stops, or changes direction. Flashings are placed underneath the roof tiles to redirect the water to another location. Flashings are also used to redirect water away from the openings in the roof, such as chimneys, vents, or pipes. The idea is to ensure that no water enters your home through these openings. Lead flashing is ideal because it is waterproof and easy to mold around nonflat surfaces such as the curves of a roof tile.

The Advantages of Using Lead in Tile Roofing

There are many advantages to using lead in tile roofing. One of the most significant is its longevity. Lead roofing can last up to 50 years, making it a durable and long-lasting option. It's also low maintenance and requires very little repair over its long lifespan, saving you money on repairs and replacements.

Another advantage of using lead in tile roofing is its flexibility. Lead is a very pliable material that can be easily formed into many different shapes. This makes it ideal for creating custom roof tiles designed for unique roofing needs or creating complex flashing structures.

Lastly, lead has been utilized for centuries and is a proven material that has stood the test of time. Its use in roofing has been traced back to ancient Roman times and has remained a popular roofing option ever since.

Is Lead Safe?

Lead can be a dangerous material when in close contact, such as interior paints. Lead on the roof of your home is completely safe. You are not able to breathe in the lead fumes or touch the lead flashing at all. Lead flashing is, therefore, not a dangerous material to install on your roof. Installers who work with lead should wear masks and regularly wash any skin which makes contact with the lead. These simple precautions keep the roofers safe.

Lead flashings on your Marley Roof.

Yes, every Marley concrete roof installed in Canada was installed with lead. You'll find lead used for wall flashings, in valleys, around skylights, and vent pipes. Lead was used for its durability, long life, and suitability to conform to the curved shape of the most popular Marley tiles. Lead is still used today for repair and restoration work on existing Marley roofs.

Lead Wall Flashing Tile Roof


Overall, lead is an excellent material for tile roofing. It has been used for centuries and has proven to be a durable and long-lasting option for homes and buildings. Its flexibility, longevity, and low maintenance make it a great roofing material choice. Should you have concerns with the lead used on your roof, please don't hesitate to contact our staff, and we'll be happy to answer any questions.

To learn more about our services or to book an inspection of your tile roof, contact Marley Roof Repairs @ 905.536.4412


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