Lead Flashing for Weatherproofing

Expertly Installed Chimney Flashing Bristol

Lead Chimney Flashing for Durability and Strength

One of the places where a roof is most vulnerable to water ingress is at the join between the chimney stack and the roof surface. This join (and similar joins around any other structures which emerge from the roof like vents, parapets and skylights) needs to be effectively sealed to make sure it is watertight for the long term, which is where roofers employ a process called “flashing”.

Flashing needs to be applied with care and skill in order to perform as it should. Mistakes could result in leaks and gradual deterioration of the roof timbers.

The material most commonly and traditionally used for flashing here in the UK is code 4 milled lead – in malleable, flexible and durable sheets. Lead has been used as flashing for thousands of years.

There are alternatives to lead flashing, such as copper, aluminium or man-made products made from a type of modified bitumen which mimic the look and properties of lead. As any experienced roofer will tell you, though, nothing works quite as well as lead for providing durability and strength – lead flashing has been known to keep functioning on historic buildings for 500 years.

Traditional Lead Flashing in Bristol

Installing lead chimney flashing is a specialised job that should only be undertaken by qualified and trained experts. In Bristol one of the leading teams of lead flashing installers are RSM Roofing.

Our professional roof leadworkers are kept busy replacing, renovating and repairing chimney flashing across all of the 37 Bristol postcodes, from the central city and Redcliffe (BS1), Kingsdown, St Paul’s St Phillips and St Agnes (BS2) through to the outer Bristol areas like Weston-super-Mare (BS22-BS24), Axbridge (BS26), Banwell (BS29), Cheddar (BS27), Clevedon (BS21), Wedmore (BS28) and Winscombe (BS25). We also cover all of north Somerset and the areas of Greater Bristol that lie in south Gloucestershire like Patchway (BS10), Bradley Stoke (BS32) and Filton (BS34).

We’re experts in applying traditional lead apron flashing, step flashing and decorative flashing to match any kind of architectural style on Bristol roofs, old and new.

We install lead flashings correctly and competently, according to the guidelines set by the National House Building Council and take all the relevant health and safety precautions for working with lead.

Why We Rely on Lead Flashing

There are several good reasons why the construction industry has relied on lead to make buildings watertight since the days of the ancient Romans. Some of these reasons are:

  • Lead can contract and expand in varying temperatures, maintaining its efficiency as a seal in all weathers.
  • Lead is mouldable – so can be fit snugly in any join.
  • Lead is resistant to many things besides water, including atmospheric corrosion, and sound.
  • It is a completely recyclable metal, making it environmentally friendly.

There are some downsides too: Lead is relatively expensive and has known to be targeted by thieves on rooftops because of its scrap value. Exposure to lead can also be toxic to humans, but it is perfectly safe up on the roof and installers are fully trained to protect themselves and equipped to work safely with lead.

Our professional lead flashing experts in Bristol are always happy to talk about their craft, so if you have any questions about lead flashing, or need advice on the repair or replacement of lead flashing, we’ll be happy to help.


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Excellent job by Robert and his team to renovate our roofs with new felt, battens, flashings etc. and to lay a new fibreglass flat roof. Kept us informed about progress throughout, with photos, and did a sterling job clearing everything up at the end. Very grateful for such a high quality service, at an affordable price and with minimum disturbance. Highly recommended.
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Thanks rob and he’s team he explained everything to me very clearly, really well mannered gentleman. Very well done will definitely be using again.
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Rob responded quickly to my call, gave a written quote the next day, completed the job within the same week. As I wasn't at the property, he kept me updated throughout and sent pictures at each stage of the job.. He was pleasant, responsive and accomplished, and while he was on site, we agreed to deal with a few other roof issues for a small additional sum. I would definitely use Rob again if needed. Thank you.

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