Our Top Five Roofing Design Blog Posts of 2019

Last week we kicked off our top ten roofing design blog posts published in 2019 with numbers ten to six. Here are the top five most read roofing design blog posts this year – is your favourite at the top? We also include a bonus at the end:

Cue Fluff Freeman and scroll down to find out more…

5.         Flat Ventilated Zinc Ridge Detail

Flat ventilated zinc ridge detailThis posts originated from our (8th in our top ten) case study on the Red Zinc Clad House at Blunham, Bedfordshire, and looked at the flat ventilated zinc ridge detail which was used. Designing a zinc roof which merges into the cladding is a challenge to get right, and in this case the intention was to make the roofing and cladding feel like a single surface which wrapped the whole upper storey and roof in a single surface.

The article looked at ventilated zinc ridge details in general, what made the Blunham one special and what to bear in mind when designing ventilated ridge details in zinc, together with elzinc’s details in 2D, 3D and interactive 3D format for you to use in your projects. Check out the details and links to download them here.

4.         Pyrites, Rust and Discolouration: How to Avoid a Rusting Slate Roof

Rusting Slate RoofThis year we launched our new SIGA Slate website which includes a knowledge base of posts about how to design and instal natural slate roofing and other related roofing materials. This post is the first of the knowledge base posts to make our top ten most popular.

One of the common questions we are asked about Natural Slate how to avoid the risk of rust in a natural slate roof. In this article we explained what pyrites are, how rusting is caused, what its effects can be. The post looks at  how to avoid specifying natural slate which might be subject to this unsightly and often damaging phenomenon. Read about rust on natural slate roofs here.

3.        Flat Roof Fire Performance: What architects need to know

House fire by Adam Belles (creative commons)Fire is a major topic of interest at the moment, and understandably so. This post was prompted by the news of a fire which broke out on the roof of a restaurant in Manchester, probably caused by a gas heater.

The article looks at the external fire ratings of flat roofs, both to protect the inhabitants of the buildings (the Penetration of the fire element) but also the people and property nearby (more associated with the Spread of Flame element). It describes how these influences are dealt with in relation to BS 476 Part 3 and in particular how fire rating tests are carried out, what the fire rating letters mean and what ratings you should be considering for your flat roofs. It includes photography of recent fire rating tests and extracts from Building Regulations 2010 Approved Document B. Take a look here.

2.         Low Pitch Slate Roof – below 20 degrees – Information and How to Specify

Low Pitch Slate RoofThis year the SIGA Natural Slate team commissioned the BRE to carry out a series of tests to determine whether it was possible to design and install a natural slate roof at below 20 degrees pitch, so as to determine whether such installations can be guaranteed. The topic of low pitch slate roofs is such a popular one, our article about the results has made it to the top two spot in our top ten this year.

Following the successful test results, we are happy to advise specifiers and contractors that they can choose a SIGA Natural Slate roof as low as 15 degrees (sheltered or moderate exposure) and 17.5 degrees (severe exposure) if the slates are hook fixed with a 150mm lap. If you’re looking for a way to specify a natural slate roof at below 20 degrees, read the post to find out how.

You can also watch a video of the test rig here:

Without further ado, here’s our number one roofing design post of 2019:

1.        Ventilated Hidden Eaves Box Gutter Detail in Zinc

Ventilated Hidden Box Gutter in ZincOnce again a metals blog post makes it to the top of the pile! Our most popular post of 2019 was the one about how to detail a zinc hidden eaves box gutter. Inspired by the Blunham house again, of course.

Hidden box gutters are concealed behind the edge of the roof, rather than attached to the eaves. This has the advantage of making it possible to have a crisp eaves detail, which can either be shallow or sharp, or flush with the edge of the building as with the house in Blunham, where the standing seam zinc cladding appears to travel up the wall and over the roof in one smooth, and apparently seamless surface. The detail used at Blunham had to be ventilated and the illustrations show how effective this gutter detail was in promulgating the ‘wrapover’ effect of the elZinc Rainbow Red and elZinc Rainbow Red Advance roofing and cladding.

The post looks at what to consider when designing a hidden eaves box gutter, including some practical installation advice. Take a look here.

One more for luck!

Ian with Sarah Beeny with the #IanClimbsKMJ flag at the Roofing Awards

Ian with Sarah Beeny with the #IanClimbsKMJ flag at the Roofing Awards

We couldn’t end without mentioning Ian Dryden, who is climbing Mt Kilimanjaro at the end of December. His journey to raise awareness of the need to tackle the epidemic of poor mental health in the construction industry has been an inspiration to us all this year. You can read about it here and here, access some resources here and watch his short motivational videos on this channel.

Ian will start his trip on Boxing Day and will be summiting Kilimanjaro on 1st January 2020, and if you’d like to spur him on, please consider donating to his JustGiving Page in aid of Samaritans. Ian has already raised nearly £7000 and it would be great to hit his £10k target and hand over a big cheque to Samaritans.

Support Ian’s campaign here:

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Tell us what you want to read

So we’ve shared our top ten most popular post this year. We love answering architects’ questions about flat roofing, metal roofing and all types of roofing challenges, so why not ask yours? You never know, we might write a blog post about it next year.

Drop us a line using the contact form with your suggestions, or if you’re feeling brave, why not write a comment on this post? We always reply.

It only remains for us to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. See you in 2020.