Considering a Slate Roof? Here's What You Need to Know

When it comes to durable roofing systems, natural slate is a long-lasting, attractive, and historic option for homeowners. Primarily sourced from the Northeast part of the US, this versatile stone is celebrated for its fire resistance, extreme strength against wind and hail, and its 100+ year lifespan.


Slate is a type of rock found in certain regions across the world. It is extracted from stone quarries in its raw form. Slate is what’s called a metamorphic rock, meaning its structure is layered (also called stratified). Metamorphic rocks are very dense, extremely hard, and are very resistant to water.

Slate is separated into flat layers. When pressure is applied correctly, slate splits at certain fissures and is broken into smooth, flat sheets. These stone sheets can then be cut into slate tiles, and can be used for roofing, flooring, countertops, and more architectural projects.

American slate comes largely from the East coast, with Virginia and Pennsylvania being the two largest producers. Buckingham slate (mined from stone quarries in Buckingham County, Virginia) is coveted by architects and homeowners for its rich charcoal-gray color and very low water absorption index (0.4%). Buckingham slate is exported across the globe as an upscale construction material.


Slate is a natural type of stone, and is available in a variety of earth tones. Gray is the most common color of slate, with shades ranging from deep charcoal-black to light bluish-gray. Slate also is available in a variety of greens, red, purple, and black. The color of slate is based on its geographic region; the presence of iron compounds generates different colors in natural slate.

Slate Roof


As a roofing material, slate is ideal for a range of climates. Slate is extremely water-resistant; as a non-porous stone, it repels water naturally and does not absorb moisture. In addition to excellent waterproofing, slate also has natural resistance to wind, hail, and extreme weather, making it among the most weather-resistant materials available on the market. Slate also lasts – for over a hundred years if it’s installed and maintained properly.

The inherent strength and longevity of slate makes it an excellent investment for any homeowner; slate roofing adds property value, provides unparalleled protection, and doesn’t fade or stain over time.