Slate is a dense, hard, fine-grained metamorphic rock that's easily split into thin slabs. Its natural colors include varying shades of greens, reds and grays, depending on where the material was quarried. You'll also find slate roofing available in a variety of thicknesses, from 1/4 to 1 inch, and corresponding weights. Characteristics. Besides offering a classic look, this naturally fire-resistant stone material has also been known to last as long as 100 years on roofs. Cost. The major drawback to slate is its significant price. It starts at $300 per square of material with installed costs running as high as $800 or $900 per square. Part of the problem is finding craftsmen who can properly handle and install this long-lasting material.
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