Zendo Roof Replacement

A few years ago we compiled a list of the major capitol projects that needed to be undertaken at Tahoma to maintain the integrity of our buildings and facilities. While we have needs for new structures to continue to facilitate and develop as a place of training it is incumbent upon us to maintain existing assets as they are an essential part of the monastery. The first of these major projects to have been undertaken was to update and modernize the pumping systems allowing well water to continue to flow. This system is now able to be run off a generator and during the dozen or so power outages we have experienced in the last six months it has performed admirably.

Fujaku working on the skylights

In spring of 2021 we had the Zendo roof inspected and it was determined to be well past its replacement date. Fears of major water damage based on some evidence of leaks led to the decision to have this inspected and our concerns were well founded. In the current climate of material shortages, a housing boom and a pandemic spurred remodeling boom it was very hard to locate roofers able to take on the work in any sort of reasonable timeframe. We finally had to just ask for a bid from a well recommended contractor and enter their queue.

The new roofing arrived (photo by Fujaku)

During the months between the bid and the start of work we were able to raise sufficient funds to cover the cost of the replacement as well as additional work that had to be done. During this time Fujaku begin a period of residency and we had him undertake a replacement of the skylights over the Zendo Deck. With assistance from Meitoku and Zenkan this was replaced a few weeks before the scheduled roofing was to begin. However we had a series of punishing storms throughout the autumn and this delayed the roofers until the end of January.

Roofing in progress

Finally as January wound down the roofers arrived. They made short work of removing the old material on the roof exposing damaging to the underlying structure. Five sheets of plywood had to be replaced due to dryrot–evidence that a roof replacement was in dire need. They quickly replaced this rotting material and covered the entire roof with a vapor barrier before the weekend. On Monday, Janaury 31st they completed the tiling of the roof.


It took only two and half days for removal of the old roof, repairs and the new roof to go up. The Zendo is a simple structure compared to some buildings but this was a fast and efficient crew. Fujaku ended his residency as well on the 31st but not before being able to see the workers finish the new roof. His assessment was that they did a very good job, cut no corners and built us a roof that with last and looks great.

Ready for many more years of practice.

Many thanks to all who donated in support of this project. It was essential that these repairs took place to preserve this building for many more years of service. This was only possible due to the generosity of all those to donated in support of this project and the continuing operations of Tahoma Zen Monastery. Nine Bows.