What to do about verges

13 Apr 2012
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United Kingdom
In the wind yesterday a few big lumps of the pointing fell out of my verge - see pics below. I bought the house earlier this year and it looks like it's been patched up several times in the past. I'm stuck as to whether to just get it repointed again (if so, is it worth patching up or raking it all out and starting again?) or go for the dry verge end caps.

The problem with the verge caps is that I also have wooden facias and soffits underneath - so would I have to get these all replaced as well? Just thinking if I do the verge caps now then I don't want to be removing them in a few years to replace the wooden facias and soffits.

From looking at neighbouring houses, some people have fitted the end caps only (leaving the original wooden facias/soffits), some have had the end caps fitted and the facias/soffits replaced with plastic ones, and some, like mine are just re-pointed. The houses are all around 25 years old now.

Can anyone recommend what to do as I've no experience in this area. I'll be getting a roofer in whichever way as I'm not going up there. Another problem is I have a box window and porch on the front of the house so getting a ladder up is impossible. It'll either need scaffolding or a brave soul to climb the roof and sort it upside down. Likewise, if there's any questions I should be asking, please let me know.

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If they are Marley tiles you could use their refurbishment dry verge kit (may work with other manufacturers tiles but wouldn't guarantee it), this extends the batten to create a fixing point so barge and soffit shouldn't be disturbed
Sorry, I have no idea what make the tiles are. What you're saying sounds good though.
If you do change your fascias for PVC in the future you will need to re-point your cement verges again at that time anyway as you'll damage them when removing your bargeboards.
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You can get continuous dry verge which does what it says ie it's a continuous length (or series of 3m lengths joined together) which you fix to the tile battens and tile up to it. You probably won't need to extend the battens but you might need to shorten the width of the tiles, depending on how it sits. You'd still need to remove it to change fascia boards at a later date.
The problem with dry verges is they have to be fitted properly, which involves a lot more work that just removing the mortar and nailing them on. Most cowboys just want to do the job as quickly as possible.

Personally I'll be sticking with mortar. Plus it also looks a darn site better than those ugly plastic caps.
your link suggests it can be retrofitted to an old roof with mortar verge. Is that not quite difficult?

my roof does not have fascia boards, just bricks.

I expect that would depend on the state of the mortar and the batten, but the long term advantages of dry verges might outweigh the initial difficulty and expense.

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