So we assume that the time has come to renew your bargeboard. Over the years the paintwork your bargeboard has been finished with has slowly deteriorated leaving the timber exposed to the elements. Before you know it your timber barge has commenced to weather and now has come to the point where the bargeboard is not worth repairing and should be replaced.
Replacing a bargeboard can seem like a simple task however a closer look in what is involved may soon change your mind.
The following points attempt to explain what steps are required to replace a simple bargeboard on a home with concrete or terra cotta roof tiles.
Step1 – Firstly, erect a safe and suitable scaffold that meets your local council and/or Workcover requirements. This will make the job of replacing your bargeboard easy and safe for you to undertake. Ensure that no aerial power wires exist (these are the wires that normally feed your home with power from the street). From time to time these wires may go through your bargeboard into your home to the power metering switchboard. Should this be the case we suggest that you contact a suitably experienced and qualified builder to undertake the job. These wires will need to be disconnected and reconnected in conjunction with the bargeboard replacement. The builder will arrange this to be undertaken using his electrician and the works will be co-ordinated with your local utilities authority. Never attempt to work around these wires as the ‘point of connection’ may have become unstable and you may increase the risk of electrocution.
Step 2 – Once you have established that the work area is safe then proceed to remove any verge tiles and sand and cement pointing (the verge tiles normally sit over the top edge of your bargeboard). Be careful to identify whether the thin about 4.5mm thick fibrous cement strip of sheeting that the sand and cement sits on does not contain asbestos. Although it may seem like a minor issue failure to handle asbestos containing material (ACM) in accordance with Safe Removal of Asbestos 2nd Edition [NOHSC: 2002 (2005)] may open up a can of worms not worth dealing with.
Step 3 – Once you have removed the verge tiles and taken away the sand and cement bedding you can then proceed with removing the bargeboard. You can do this several ways. The most common is to use a pinch bar to pry away the barge from the rafter or outriggers. Be careful not to loosen any substrate timbers in this process. Also should you home have eaves lining then it is important that you take the necessary steps to ensure that the timbers supporting your eaves are adequately fixed into position prior to removing the bargeboard. Failure to do so may cause the eave lining to fall away when attempting to remove the bargeboard. Remember it is common to find asbestos in eaves linings therefore ensure that you take the necessary precautions in handling eave sheeting as outlined in Step 2 above.
Step 4 – So you have finally removed the bargeboard, we can only assume prior to removing the rotted bargeboard earlier in the week you ordered a new piece of bargeboard to suit the size of barge that was to be replaced. Please ensure that you order a suitable species of timber ideal for exterior use and also make sure that all four edges are sealed and undercoated using a suitable quality paint. Your local timber yard will be able to advise what species of timber would be suitable for barge. Ensure that after cutting the new bargeboard that you seal the end grain with paint. This will reduce the likelihood of water penetrating the end grain and encouraging rot once again. Position and fix your new bargeboard into position using suitable sized, type and coated nails.
Step 5– After the bargeboard has been fixed into position continue to refit the verge tiles. Start by fixing a new fibrous cement sheet strip over the top edge of the barge. This will provide a flat support for the sand and cement bedding to rest on. Mix up suitable batch of sand and cement mix and commence refitting the verge tiles back into their original position. Bed and point the edge of the verge tiles finishing the bedding back slightly from the finished edge of the tiles. This will allow room for the coloured pointing to the applied once the bedding has dried. Finally once the bedding has dried use a flexible pointing to finish the edge of the verge. It is often that people match the colour of pointing to match the roof tiles however it is not uncommon to contract the pointing from the roof tile colour as well.
Step 6 – Disassemble the scaffolding and remove and all rubbish from site leaving the site clean, safe and tidy.
Many variations exist with homes containing gables and barges. Depending on the age of the building many bargeboards may be decorative, in particular should your home have been built post California bungalow 1940’s circa. Most of the older homes don’t have tiled verges and have been finished using a timber barge capping.
Experienced building contractors are setup to undertake jobs such as barge board replacement. They are ready to address the issues that may arise during the work and that have been mentioned above. The idea of DIY barge replacement may sound appealing and a challenge however if you are not 100% certain on what you are doing the project may become a liability.
In any case should you be thinking of taking on the challenge then think through the steps that need to be taken carefully and plan for some of those unforeseen issues that may arise during the course of the works.