Using a lead free alternative product for roof flashing lowers the cost and brings down building insurance premiums associated with lead flashing. Here are some things every worker should know about using lead-free flashing:
Considerations when choosing lead-free flashing
Lead free flashing products’ quality varies in their backing and facing. Choosing a higher performance facing ensures its pliability and ability to be stretched a considerable amount, and a self-adhesive backing would give the product the same quality of flexibility and detailing as lead. A high-quality product like Wakaflex is manufactured to stretch up to 50%, and has a strong Butyl adhesive.
The benefits of lead free flashing
Lead free flashing products are lighter than lead products by approximately 75%. They can be stretched and cut more easily, using a knife, shears or scissors, with no need for any lead forming tools. Lead free products don’t require the priming that’s usually needed for a secure bond. There is no susceptibility when it comes to thermal movement and it can be laid out in one roll, without the use of fixing tools.
When lead free flashing is permitted
At times there may be jobs where only lead flashing can be used, commonly in order to keep in line with the building’s authenticity e.g. buildings with historic significance or structures which are heritage listed. For most other residential and commercial jobs, however, lead free flashing is a great low-cost option, offering high-quality performance and durability. If in doubt, contact and enquire with your local authority before starting a job to check the policies in regards to roof flashing, as they can be different in each area.
The uses of lead-free flashing
Lead free flashing is a perfect alternative and can be used for any job lead flashing is usually used for. Lead free flashing can be used in half the time to seal solar panels, hips, saddles, traditional upstand work, rooflights and a variety of other jobs lead flashing is commonly used for.