Advice to save you money – Five things to know about a typical Portuguese roof
This roof design and construction is very typical of Portuguese homes built in the last 100 years.
What do you need to know if you have bought or are buying a house in Portugal?
The roof is made of wood. The large round pole at the top page the picture is a whole tree and it is Eucalyptus. The round pole lower in the picture is a roof purlin and is also Eucalyptus This tells us that the roof has been replaced in the past.
The roof joists, running at an angle each side of the roof are also sawn Eucalyptus and they are way too thin and weak to be used on a roof resulting in a roof that will flex in high wind and storms which can loosen roof tiles and or break them.
The tile laths are made of Portuguese pine and are very prone to wood worm attack. This typically allows a roof tile to move and allows rain water to soak the roof joists and purlins where they meet to house walls. The moisture rots out the ends of the joists and purlins causing roofs to collapse.
The roof tiles are often laid at too shallow an angle so that they cannot work properly allowing rain to blow back under them and on to the roof timber resulting in rot. You will also notice in the photograph that you can see daylight through gaps in the roof tiles. These gaps will also let rain into the roof space.
Here is an example of a roof that Castelo Construction built using correctly dimensioned timbers that will last for generations.