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Storm damaged slate patio tile repair

Despite the material’s rugged appearance and deserved reputation for shrugging off the British weather, an area of slate paving in the garden of a private house suffered serious disfigurement as the result of the past winter’s storms. More worrying for the owners, a university professor and her husband, as well as their insurance company, was the seeming impossibility of matching the multi-coloured stone so that the damaged sections could be replaced.

Thankfully, however, the insurance company involved is a client of Plastic Surgeon, the national cosmetic repair specialist whose highly trained Finishers are able to repair numerous building substrates, both inside and outside the home.

Plastic Surgeon’s Eastern Region Operations Manager, Colin Tommins, takes up the account saying: “This assignment involved damage that had been caused to a large property in Hertfordshire, during a storm back in January. Unfortunately some of the roof tiles had been blown off and landed on a slate seating area in the garden, taking large chunks out of the slabs in four places.

“The owners had made a claim with their insurance company, but they had not had any luck in matching the richly coloured stone which contained swirls of different colours: including reds, browns, greys and greens. Faced with the prospect of having to replace the entire patio area, the insurance company called us in to see what we could do.”

Having evaluated the extent of the damage and the options open to them, Plastic Surgeon submitted a quote based on one day’s labour, which was duly approved. Because some of the damage was along the edge of the slate slabs, and in excess of 40 mm deep, the repair work began by shuttering the face in order to build the surface back up.

This was done by using Plastic Surgeon’s Cold-weld Gel product which is suitable for use with a variety of materials and effectively stabilises a repair. Once this had set the base repair was over-coated using proprietary two-pack fillers and smoothed back with an orbital sander and a graduation of abrasives.

With the form and texture of the slate restored, the Finisher then mixed half a dozen colours of paint by eye and sprayed them in across the repair area to match the swirling richness of this versatile metamorphic rock. The repair was completed by applying two sprayed coats of Plastic Surgeon’s System 20 which provides an extremely tough and hardwearing protective layer, able to withstand pedestrian traffic and even the scraping of garden furniture.

Commenting on the success of the work, Colin Tommins concludes saying: “There is a tendency to think slate is simply grey and flat, but when you look at some varieties close up you see a whole spectrum of colours; plus the way in which the layers present a riven edge. This why it had been impossible to find a match for the damaged slate paving, and also why the repairs were a real challenge for our Finisher. The work was completed in a relatively short period of time and the customer is delighted with the results.”

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