Your roof is your peace of mind. It shelters you and your loved ones night after night, keeping the rain, the wind and the cold at bay. Deciding what type of roofing your home needs, thatching, corrugated iron or tiles, is not something that you will be considering every day. So getting it right the first time is of the utmost importance. You wouldn’t be the first person to want their house to have thatched roofing, but have you considered all of the pros and cons?
What is thatched roofing?
When a house is said to have thatched roofing, the roofing will consist of natural, dry vegetation such as reeds, grass or straw. The vegetation is layered in such a way that it protects the inside of the home from being flooded with rain water. Thatched roofing is rather popular in all types of companies regardless of the climates and as it is a more cost effective version of roofing. For this reason, it is rather popular.
Having thatched roofing will give a home or building a rustic look and feel and the roofing itself is very much environmentally friendly. The art of thatching has been passed down from generation to generation and it has been used throughout Europe’s earliest times. Examples of thatching can also be found in Hawaii, Fiji and Kenya and there is even evidence of thatching being used during the earliest times of the Aztecs. In South Africa, having this type of roofing is something that many people desire. A thatched roof makes us feel as though we are away from the city and spending time in the bush, out in nature.
The performance of the thatch depends a lot on the climate in which the thatch will be placed and it depends greatly on the quality of the thatch being used as well as on the skill of the person doing the thatching.
The advantages of installing thatched roof
- A thatched roof will offer you better insulation. In fact having thatched roofing means you have insulation that will be better than any other type of roofing on the market, at least, where insulating is concerned. Thatch keeps a home warm in winter and cool in summer, perfect for the South African climate.
- Thatching requires minimum maintenance. You will no longer have to worry about painting your roof or sanding off those rust patches. You will also not have to worry about tiles breaking. If you use an expert thatcher you will be given the best treatment and you won’t have to worry about birds stealing your thatching. An expert thatcher will make sure your roofing is protected.
- The ridge of the roof is the most vulnerable part of the roof. A great thatcher will make sure that this part of your roof is protected in some way or another. The apex of your roof is also a sensitive part that needs to be protected and kept watertight. This means you thatching is able to better protect your home from rain water.
- Thatched roofs have a long lifespan and if quality thatching is used the thatching might never have to be replaced. You will need to make sure that your thatching gets proper care and proper maintenance in order for it to enjoy a longer lifespan. But if you take care of your thatching you will never have too many sleepless nights about the roof over your head.
- When this type of roofing is used together with special tiles, such as Harvey tiles, the thatching is guaranteed to have a much longer lifespan.
Now for a few disadvantages
- Weaver birds love thatching, and not in a good way. Weaver birds have been known to strip the thatch and used the straw to make their nests. This can very quickly lead to terrible damage to your thatching if you do not take the right steps to protect the thatch. Usually, a mesh made out of metal or plastic will be used to cover the thatch and keep the birds at bay.
- The ridge needs to be checked on occasionally as it is the weakest part of the roof.
The little things you can do to take care of your thatching
The great thing about thatching is that if it is done properly, by a professional, you will quite probably never have to worry about having to do maintenance on your thatching again. But there are a few quick things that you can do to make sure that your thatching stays in a good condition.
- Give your thatch a quick inspection
First walk around and give your thatch a proper inspection. This will give you the initial idea about the condition your thatch is in and it will allow you to set up a schedule to make your inspections easier. If the thatching is slipping out don’t panic, this doesn’t mean that your thatching is going to need immediate replacement. Keep in mind, if the thatching looks a bit thin it doesn’t mean that the thatching is bad.
Check the underside of the roof along with the rafters. Occasionally smaller rafters have been known to break but they are easy to fix without disrupting the thatch itself. Also, be sure to check the ridging and to make sure that the ridge covering is still in a good condition.
- Look for small animals and birds
You can’t blame little critters and birds looking for a home in your thatch or stealing thatch for their own home. But they can damage your thatching. Bring in a professional thatcher to cover your thatching. Sometimes small birds can make holes in or near the apex if you see this then be sure to call in the professionals.
- Get a quote
Usually, it is advisable that only the professionals make the necessary changes and repairs to the thatching, so once you have determined the damage done and what needs to be repaired, call in the experts and get a quote.
Your dreams of a thatched roof home are not so far away. If you are considering changing your roofing to thatch, fixing your thatching or building a home and want it to be thatched, contact Bundu Dakke for the most professional, expert services.