What Is Lead Guttering? What Is The Purpose Of Lead Flashing?
What Is Lead Guttering?
Lead guttering is a type of roofing material that has been used since medieval times. It is not actually guttering in the traditional sense, but rather lead linings used to form gutters on certain properties.
Lead gutter linings are commonly found on churches and other buildings with pitched roofs.
They are used to manage rainwater and prevent water from penetrating the building’s structure via joints.
Lead gutter linings are formed with the nature of the leadwork in mind and should make provision for discharge either via a fully welded outlet or sump detail.
Common problems with lead gutters include oversizing (in width and/or length) and gutter bay defects, such as when a gutter bay is fixed into the rebate at one end and turns a corner at the bottom end before the drip detail.
Lead flashings are an integral part of the roof that prevents water from penetrating the building’s structure via joints.
Lead flashings have been used for hundreds of years due to their efficiency in waterproofing joints in the roof, as well as their aesthetically pleasing appearance.
What Is The Purpose Of Lead Flashing?
The purpose of lead flashing is to provide a waterproof seal around doors, windows, and wall abutments.
Lead flashing is highly malleable and can be shaped to fit most angles, making it an ideal material for sealing gaps in roofs.
Lead flashing also offers fireproof qualities and can be used to insulate the roof, preventing heat from entering the home.
Lead flashings are also long-lasting and can last up to three times as long as other materials. Lead is the most common material used for flashing due to its reliability and longevity.
What Are The Different Types Of Lead Flashing?
There are several different types of lead flashing, each with its own purpose and installation technique.
The three main types of lead flashing are apron flashing (also known as continuous flashing), base flashing, and step flashing.
Apron flashing is used to weather the junction between a roof and an abutment,
Base and step flashings are used to weather the junction between the wall/abutment and the upstand of the roof flashing.
Lead flashings can be made from aluminum, steel, or copper, though steel is the most popular choice due to its malleability and corrosion-resistance when galvanized.
The three primary techniques for installing roof flashings are soldering, caulking, and mechanical fastening.
What Can Be Used Instead Of Lead Flashing?
Lead flashing is a popular choice for roof flashings due to its durability and water resistant qualities.
However, there are several alternatives to lead flashing that can provide similar performance and appearance.
These alternatives include polycarbonate wall flashing, which is packaged as a roll and provides a tight, waterproof seal.
Other alternatives include metals such as copper, aluminium, and stainless steel, as well as lead-free flashings such as Cromar Flashband Lead Replacement Flashing and Cromar Lead Free Plus Lead Replacement Flashing.
These alternatives are often quicker and easier to install than traditional lead flashing, and they are also non-toxic and more cost-effective than lead.
What Tools Are Needed To Install Lead Guttering?
The tools needed for installing lead guttering include a ladder, tin snips, rivet gun and rivets, gutter pliers, outlet saws and gutter outlet punches, pipe cutters, notchers, drills, riveters, downspout crimpers and expanders, tape measure, hammer, circular saw or handsaw.
Additionally, it is recommended to have some DIY skills and experience in order to install the gutter guards correctly.
When assembling the gutter and downspouts it is necessary to clamp the material firmly to a couple of saw horses and cut using a handsaw or circular saw.
Gutter fasteners come in a variety of styles such as screw and ferrule, fascia brackets, roof hangers with strap or hidden hangers.
Hidden hangers should be pre-attached while assembling the gutter section at ground level.