Making an Informed Decision on Slate Roofing

We’re spoiled for options for roofing material in Alberta, but which ones work best for our weather conditions?

Roofs aren’t one-size-fits-all, especially in Alberta’s climate, where we experience extreme temperature changes and harsh weather conditions such as heavy snowfall and high winds.

When having roofing work done, we know it can be a big project for you. Today we’re focusing on slate tile and how it holds up!

By outlining the pros and cons, these pointers will help you decide whether slate tile roofing is right for your house.

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What Is Slate Tile?

Slate tile is a natural blend of metamorphic rock commonly used for roofing. It is known for its durability, longevity, and resistance to weathering.

It is also popular for its aesthetic appeal, available in various colours and textures. On the other hand, the synthetic version uses a blend of plastic and rubber materials. Therefore, synthetic slate is lighter and more affordable.

Benefits of Slate Tile:

Is slate tile right for your next roofing project? Here are some benefits:

Long Lifespan

One of the main advantages of slate tile is its long lifespan.

A slate tile roof can last for over a century when properly installed and maintained. In comparison, your average asphalt shingle roof will last between 15 to 30 years.

This makes it a cost-effective option in the long run, as it can save you the expense of replacing your roof multiple times. So, if you plan on living in your current home for the next several years, this one is for you!

Winter Durability

For Alberta’s climate, slate tile can be a good choice as it can withstand extreme temperature changes and harsh weather conditions such as heavy snowfall and high winds.

You can feel safer and warmer knowing that your roofing material can withstand biting winters.

Pest and Fire Resistance

Slate tile is also resistant to fire and pests, making it a safe choice for your home.

Slate tile is a non-organic material, which means it does not provide food for pests like termites or carpenter ants. These pests typically feed on wood, which is not present in slate tile roofing.

Additionally, slate tile is a dense and durable material that can withstand the impact of heavy foot traffic and other forms of damage. This makes it difficult for pests to burrow into or create nests in a slate tile roof.

As for fire resistance, slate tile is a non-combustible material that is unlikely to catch fire or burn. This makes it a safer option than other roofing materials, such as wood shingles, which are highly flammable.

It’s important to note that while slate tile is naturally resistant to fire and pests, proper installation and maintenance are still crucial for maintaining its resistance over time.


Slate is a natural and renewable resource – quarried from the earth – is not a synthetic material. This means that slate is a sustainable option regarding the materials used to create it.

Slate tile is also recyclable, which means it can be broken down and reused in other applications if the roof is removed. Lastly, slate tile is also energy efficient. It has high thermal mass, so it absorbs and retains heat, helping keep the home cooler in summer and warmer in winter.

This can help reduce the energy needed to heat and cool the home, which benefits the environment!

While quarrying slate tile has some environmental impact, it’s lower than other roofing materials like asphalt shingles from fossil fuels.

Boosts Home Value

One of the key benefits of a slate tile roof is the aesthetic appeal it can add to your home.

With its natural beauty and unique texture, slate tile can significantly enhance your home’s curb appeal, making it stand out in the neighbourhood.

Additionally, the natural material of slate tile adds an elegant touch to any home, giving it a timeless and sophisticated look.

Another advantage of slate tile is the customization options available. Unlike other roofing materials, slate tile comes in various colours, sizes, and thicknesses, allowing you to choose the perfect match for your home’s style and architecture.

This can make your home unique and give it a distinct character!

Considerations Before Installing a Slate Roof in Canada

There are some important things to consider before you decide to install slate tile roofing:


Slate tile weighs a lot. Your roof will need to undergo an inspection to be sure it can handle the weight, which can cost money to obtain.

While the weight varies depending on size and thickness, a slate roof weighs between 700-1,500 lbs per square (100 sq ft). Asphalt shingles weigh between 200-430 lbs per square (100 sq ft), so your home may require additional support to withstand the weight.


One potential downside is the cost of installation and maintenance, as it requires specialized skills and equipment.

This can make it more expensive than other roofing options and cost more per square foot than any other roofing material.

However, it’s important to keep in mind the longevity of a slate tile roof. As mentioned earlier, a properly installed and maintained slate tile roof can last for over a century, making it a cost-effective option in the long run.

When choosing your roofing material, it’s important to factor in not only the upfront cost but also the cost of upkeep and maintenance.

While other roofing materials may have a smaller upfront cost, they may require more repairs over time.

In contrast, a slate tile roof may be more costly upfront but will likely only need to be replaced after a few years.

Synthetic Slate

If you’re drawn to the aesthetic of slate tile but concerned about the cost, synthetic slate tile may be a great alternative. This material offers a similar style at a more affordable price point.

Additionally, synthetic slate is significantly lighter than natural slate, making it easier to work with and potentially reducing the installation cost. Consult with your roofer on which material best fits your budget and roof!

Contacting A Professional Slate Tile Roofer

Are you considering slate tile roofing? At National Star Roofing, we specialize in slate tile installation and repair.

Slate tile roofing requires expert knowledge and skills, and attempting to install or repair it on your own can be dangerous and costly. Trust the experts at National Star Roofing to protect you and your home.

As a four-time winner for the Best of HomeStars, we’re one of Calgary’s top-rated roofing contractors. You can trust our team to provide you with the highest quality service.

Summer is the best time to get your roofing done, and with National Star Roofing, you’ll have a beautiful new roof before winter. Don’t wait; book your roofing service now and beat the rush!

National Star Roofing Inc

The editorial team is consisted of roofing experts with National Star Roofing Inc, a family-owned business based in Calgary, Alberta. With over 20 years of experience in the industry, they specialize in residential and commercial roof installations, repairs, and maintenance. The authors are passionate about providing reliable roofing services and sharing their extensive knowledge to help homeowners make informed decisions about their roofing needs. In their spare time, the author enjoys exploring the beautiful Canadian outdoors and supporting local communities.

Building Roofs for Albertans since 2003.

Residential & Commercial roofing. 500+ verified reviews with 5-star ratings (Google Reviews + Homestars)

* No credit card required