Nubrik Tombstones were a fantastic terracotta roof tile product released during the 1960’s. Being a very heavy tile, they were solid and reliable. As a result, many homes are still functioning perfectly well with these tiles in place. The Tombstones were made with a flat, semi glazed or full glazed surface. These roof tiles had nails holes which used for fixing then down. Every second cause of roof tile gets nailed in to place.
About 25 years ago, Nubrik Roofing went through a patch of about 2 years where they were using steel nails to fasten down their Tombstone roof tiles. This faulty workmanship by using steel nails resulted in the nails oxidizing and expanding, thus cracking the tiles. The cracked roof tiles have obviously resulted in constant leaking and water ingress to roof space.
The only remedy for this problem is to remove every second row of roof tiles and re-nail with a galvanized nail. Broken tiles will need to be changed, and the rubbish discarded. The correct procedure is to use a galvanized nail, commonly called Clouts that won’t oxidise and corrode. Tiles can also be clipped with galvanized snap clip system. Obviously Nubrik have since identified this issue and ensured that their roofs are installed as per Australian Standards, but this doesn’t help roof owners with the current problem at hand.
On average we normally expect and would make an allowance to change every second to third roof tile. In an extreme case (where every tile has been nailed) we would allow for breakages to all roof tiles and need to change the roof over.
For 90% of projects, the ridge capping and valleys will need to be re-bed and pointed with a flexible pointing compound, as they will be disturbed during the re-nailing process. Mandatory safety railing will also need to set up around the perimeter as per Australian OH&S legislation.
Because of the extensive amount of roof tile replacements required on these particular jobs, Nubrik Tombstone roof tiles are fairly hard to source and are quite expensive. Especially if there many roof tiles required such as most jobs necessitate. They come in a couple of different colours and can be flat finish, fully glazed or semi-glazed. However, the most common colour would be that of mission brown or black.
Tombstones can be purchased from different roof tile suppliers. It is important to make sure the roof tile is taken in so the profile can be confirmed. There are a couple of different profiles available for a Tombstone roof tile.
If you have Nubrik Tombstones on your roof or any roof tile in general, it is a great idea to have it inspected periodically. A reputable roofing contractor will know exactly what to look for so that your roofing will continue to function adequately. They may also catch any problem because it becomes messy and expensive.