No, wooden shakes aren’t the least popular flavor of malt at the local burger shop. Rather, wooden shakes are made from split logs and are used to cover a roof, much like a shingle. They’re typically made of cedar, spruce or treated pine. Shakes are brown or reddish in color when new, but usually fade in the first year to a gray color.
You’ll be able to tell a hand-split shake if you look closely enough. You’ll see that they have a rough, textured look on the front and are usually smooth on the back. Wood shingles, on the other hand, are smooth on both sides because they are sawed by a machine.
Interested in making your own wooden shakes? Go find yourself some cedar. It’s generally the highest performing wood for making shakes. Treated pine shakes also perform well. Like most untreated wood, shakes will expand over time. To allow for this expansion, space the wooden shakes up to 1/4″ apart from each other.
You might be wondering why people use shakes. Sure, they aren’t the most elegant or classiest type of roofing, but they are durable, cost-effective, and they normally last about 30 years without needing to be replaced. Just make sure you inspect the shakes every now and again. Individual shakes may shrink, warp or splinter.
If you need to remove or repair a wooden shake, make sure you’ve got a nail ripper handy. Using the nail ripper, remove the nails holding the damaged shake. Clear out any remaining scrap pieces, splitting them free with a pry bar and hammer if necessary. Fit the new shake and nail it in place at the gap created by the upper shakes. Dab some roofing cement on the exposed nail heads to prevent water penetration.
When making any roof repairs, be very careful and look out for moisture. Shingle and shake roofs can get very slippery when wet. A fall off a roof is a really easy way to permanently injure or even kill yourself. Safety always comes first!
For any questions about installing or tearing out shakes, give Best Rate Repair a call at (619) 229-0116 or leave a comment below.