Leska LLC Blog

Copper roof over shed dormer & Flat Roof in Washington DC NW!

Posted by Martin Leska on Fri, Nov 9, 2012 @ 18:11 PM

Leska just completed a new roof in Washington DC, Van Ness.  

The most shocking thing about this roof is that when it we got there, we found two EDPM roofs that had been installed less than two months ago.The workmanship was so bad it was impossilbe to repair: the only solution was to replace it.

The original roof on the home, a metal roof, had lasted over 80 years.  The homeowners got the badly installed EDPM roofs when it had slowly started to leak.  The owner did what any owner would do, hire a contractor. We don't like to speak poorly of other builder's work, but in this case there were two unexcusible errors.

First, the original contractors didn't even bother to remove the old metal roof, install new flashing, and perhaps the most extreme, they didn't remove the old slates to insert the new membrane under the existing slates. Instead, they cut the membrane at the edge of the slate roof and caulk the seam. Their flashing details on the flat roof destroyed all of the hip and ridge coper flashing.

Leska separated this project into 2 tasks:

#1. Shed dormer with a new standing seam copper roof

  • Removed and disposed of 2 roofs. 
  • Lumber replacement (of course)
  • Peel and Stick high-temeprature titanium underlayment. 
  • Temporary removal of slate and storage. 
  • The orignal pipe boot was damaegd by the previous installers and also used caulk to repair broken slates, so we fixed all of it.
  • Leska then installed 16 oz copper panels with 1" tall double mechanical seam with tapered valley. 
  • 2 rows of slates were re-installed. 
  • We equpped the roof with new copper flashing on the hips
  • All broken and caulked slates were properly replaced with new Vermont green slates.


The copper roof, as it's a beautiful material that will slowly change color (patina), was the obvious choice for the shed dormer on the fron of their home. 

front roof

#2. Main Flat Roof

  • The EPDM rubber roof instaleld directly over 80+ year old metal roof had to be removed. 
  • Leska's crew spent an entire day fixing damaged wood and removing pounds of caulk from slate and slate top flashing. 
  • Chimney and parapet flashing were done with the same "caulk craziness". 
  • Leska provide owner with multiple options


The owner, knowing how worry-free their metal roof had been talked to us about a new metal roof.  We explained to them that it's almost unheard of for a metal roof to last that long, but that they would last for 12 years with minor maintenance and after that, occasional maintenance will keep your roof in great shape. Preaching that metal roofs are a great, wallet-friendly option, we encouraged them to consider one.  Leska helped the owner with color selection.  Along with the homeowner, we decided that a dark bronze color painted roof would look similar to aged copper which would match their home very well.

We installeld Englert's 26ga panels with double mechanical seams. Dont forget to take notice of our hand seaming techniques around the chimney penetration. The curved seam is actually a hand-made seam, something you can't get from a machine. Leska's custom parapet flashing finished the job.

flat roof blog pic resized 600

Topics: standing seam, roofing, Leska, Leska LLC, Englert, Copper, metal, Van Ness St NW, Washington DC