Slate roofing, as the name suggests, involves using slate shingles to protect the house from the elements. Slate is a naturally nonporous rock that is relatively easy to cut, so it makes for long-lasting waterproof roofing material.
It can last hundreds of years with basic maintenance. As well, depending on what aesthetic you are aiming for, there are a variety of slate shingles that you can choose from.
Exploring the World of Slate Roofing: Colours and Options
Slate roofing has been popular for centuries. In fact, the first-ever private slate roof was recorded around the year 1300 in North Wales. At the time, it was known for giving a classic regal look to the house, but over the years, several different designs and colour options have become available.
- Standard slate roof: Similarly sized slate shingles are laid uniformly along horizontal courses.
- Random width slate roof: The slate tiles used have the same length and thickness but with different widths.
- Graduated length slate roof: Slate shingles of varied lengths, and used with the longest and widest slates at the eaves.
- Textural slate roof: Slate tiles with rough surface textures and thicknesses are used.
There can be variations in each of these roofing styles, and different colours can be used within the same roofing project. Speaking of colours, the most common ones for slate roofs are Onyx (or black), Deep green, Arendale, Cottage, Victorian, Sonoma, and Atlantic.
Factors Influencing Slate Roof Colour Selection
While choosing a specific colour for slate roofing is a completely subjective decision, there are some common factors that you may need to consider before picking one, including the following:
- Architectural style of your home: The style of your home will decide which colour of roof you should choose. While there are no fixed rules, smaller homes should consider lighter slate colours. Bungalows look good with medium to dark brown or grey-coloured tiles. Spanish-style homes look good with rusty reds, terracotta, or orange colour tiles, and so on.
- Your neighbourhood: Whether you reside in an area with many trees or several other houses, you would ideally go for a colour that fits into that environment. So, the objective should be to come up with a colour that makes a statement without feeling out of place. Furthermore, homes in areas that see a lot of sun should avoid black or dark colour slate shingles.
- Costs: Some slate roofing varieties and patterns are more expensive than the more standard options. More exciting-looking colours could cost more and add to your budget for the project.
Classic Slate Roof Colours: Timeless Choices for Traditional Homes
Traditional homes can choose to either stand out from the crowd and go with a colour that pops, or they can go the classic route and choose a more subtle and timeless colour like black or grey. Both are neutral but sophisticated-looking colours that will withstand the test of time, not just because of the durability of slate shingles, but also because of the classic colour.
Black slate shingles will go with any style of home and will also blend well with the environment, although they will attract more heat during the summer. Grey gives a distinguished look and is another timeless colour that blends well with the environment. While bright colours may seem attractive and interesting for a few years, black and grey never go out of style.
Contemporary and Bold: Slate Roof Colours for Modern Architecture
Modern homes have the luxury to go with either the standard black or Onyx slate shingles or choose something more unique like a multicolour pattern slate roof. Depending on the side of the house, the roof colour can be either dark or light to give contrast. Some of the slate roof colours that look great on modern homes are Onyx, light Arendale, Victorian, Welsh (grey and purple), Washington (a mix of light and dark), and Cottage, among others.
These colours can be used in combination with more stylish-looking slate shingle patterns like a mixed-colour slate roof, patterned roof, staggered butt slate roof, graduated slate roof, and more.
Regional Styles and Preferences: Local Influences on Colour Choices
Selecting the right colour is not just about aesthetics. There are some practical considerations as well—the most important being choosing dark or light colours. Slate shingles are available in a variety of different colours, and the more traditional colours are Onyx or black.
While it is a popularly used colour, as it fits with most styles of homes, black absorbs more heat and your house would potentially run hotter. In the winter, though, this becomes an advantage, as dark colours will attract more heat to melt the snow quickly.
Light colours will reflect the light and potentially keep your house cooler. This would save you some money on your heating bill. So, depending on where you reside, selecting the right colour may be more important than you think.
Aesthetics: Choose What Makes You Happy
Ultimately, it all comes down to what makes you, the homeowner, happy. Once you have decided on which type of slate shingle to use, you will have to consider the fact that the colour you select will stay for many years to come. So, while going with more neutral colours like grey and black is the easier route, it may not be pleasing to you in the long run.
If you know that a particular colour will make you happy and you will be comfortable with it several years down the line, don’t hesitate. Furthermore, while there are combinations of siding and roof colours that work well, you do not have to stick with the norm.
Slate Roofing Tiles for Every Home
When it comes to slate roofing, there are a lot of options to choose from. However, there are some key aspects that need to be considered when selecting a colour or style of slate shingles.
The location, your immediate surroundings, and the architecture of the house will dictate what type of slate roofing will look and work best. Consult with a professional roofing company to get advice on the right type of slate roofing for you.