Replacing a damaged roof tile in 5 easy steps

August 13, 2015

The modular nature of a tiled roof means most repair jobs are quite manageable. Here's what you can do to replace a damaged roof tile in five easy steps.

Replacing a damaged roof tile in 5 easy steps

What you will need

  • Hand brush
  • Replacement tile
  • Softwood shims (if required)
  • Hammer (if required)
  • Wire cutters (if required)

Before you begin

Broken roof tiles should be replaced promptly, but don't rush into this job without knowing how to work safely on the roof.

1. Expose the tile

  • The first thing to do is gain access to the damaged tile.
  • With one hand, raise the row of tiles immediately above the one that is to be replaced.
  • Use the handle of a hammer or a couple of small softwood shims to support these tiles while you work.

2. Snip the ties

  • Every second row of tiles is wired or nailed to the batten below.
  • If the tile you're replacing is wired into place, try reaching in under the tile above it with a pair of cutters to snip the ties.
  • The alternative is to enter the roof space and free the tile from below.

3. Twist and remove

  • Lift and twist the damaged tile to release it from the interlocking grooves of the adjacent tiles.
  • Remember to take particular care when handling old tiles since they become very brittle with age and are easily damaged.

4. Brush away grit

  • Carefully brush dust and dirt from the interlocking grooves of the adjacent tiles.
  • These areas must be thoroughly cleaned as it's these grooves that prevent water from entering the roof space.
  • Also ensure that the grooves on the replacement tile are clean and free from dirt.

5. Lock it in place

  • Insert your new tile at an angle.
  • Press down gently and rock the tile from side to side to ensure that it is firmly locked into the grooves of the adjacent tiles.
  • Lower the row of tiles above the work area back into place, removing any shims that you had in place.

Follow these five easy steps, and you'll likely have an easier time replacing a damaged roof tile.

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