We specialise in the repair and protection of thatched roofing
There is nothing worse than finding that your roof is leaking, with a real worry of what damage water ingress will do to your property.
For the most part, leaks can stopped through carrying out repair work, through finding the cause of the leak, solving the problem and inserting new material. In the cost extreme of cases, where attempting to repair the roof would cause more damage to it than solving, we can install heavy duty tarpaulins prior to re-thatching.
We can also solve damage caused through rodents entering the roof, bird damage and damage caused by fire.
Fire is one of the greatest fears for thatched property owners, though statistically, a thatched property is no more likely to catch fire than any other property.
We can offer full advice on fire protection, though there are some simple guidelines to help keep your property safe:-
- If you have a wood burner or open fire, ensure you use the correct flue liner, which will normally be a twin walled liner.
- Have your chimney swept prior to the start of the burning season and after your last fire.
- Use only properly seasoned wood, never used treated wood. Treated and wet wood when burnt, causes tar to form, blocking your flue.
- Ensure the chimney is well maintained, through keeping the chimney stack pointed.
- Having the electrically systems regularly checked.
- Spark guards are now discouraged, due to not dispersing the sparks fully. Bird guards can be used and are effective against keeping jackdaws out of your chimney.
Have correctly fitted and working smoke alarms.
There are different products available for fire protection:-
Fire Proof Membrane
This is similar in many ways to felt, offering one hour of protection. This product is very flexible and suitable for older properties, where the existing rafters do not run level.
Thatch Fire Board
These boards are designed like plaster board but offer one hour of fire protection. Ideal for new properties and those with machine sawn timbers, with a level roof structure, these boards when installed correctly, comply with Building Regulations ‘Dorset Model’. The joint between the boards must be sealed with fire proof sealant, with ‘Thatchbatts’. Thatchbatts are a rock wool slab, fitted between rafters, slowing heat transfer around the timbers. They also stop condensation build up which naturally occurs when using Fire Boarding alone.
The majority of thatch fires occur through heat transfer from wood and multi fuel burners, transferring the high build of temperature through the chimney to the thatch, causing the thatch to burn from the inside out.
The ThatchAlert system is an alarm which is fitted to the chimney, allows any abnormally high heat transfer to be detected and the alarm sounded.
Both the fire proof membrane and the fire boarding can only be applied when all existing thatch is removed, something which does not normally occur when re-thatching with either long straw or combed wheat reed. Complete removal of all material in these cases would require listed building consent where the property is listed.
We can offer full advice and can adapt to your requirements.