Consumers have a wide range of alternatives when shopping for roof tiles due to the large range of profiles, colours, and finishes available, as well as the versatility of the materials used to produce roof tiles.
Whether it's a textured metal sheet with a tile impression or a very traditional Welsh slate roof, each type of roof tile has a set of advantages that appeal to various people. Some people, for example, may prefer a textured metal sheet with a tile look over a classic Welsh slate roof.
In contrast to slate, which may require some maintenance to prevent the growth of moss on its surface, clay tiles require very little maintenance for its entire intended lifespan.
To give you a sense of the diversity of roofing tile possibilities available, we've provided a quick overview of the benefits and features that buyers find appealing, as well as the starting prices for the majority of tile variants on the market.
What Are Roof Tiles?
It is the primary purpose of roof tiles to prevent water from entering a dwelling. However, they are not the same as conventional asphalt shingle roofs in terms of both the materials that make them up and the way they look.
The usage of clay roofing may be traced all the way back to 10,000 BC, while slate tile roofing was in use as early as the 1600s. Slate and clay were common roofing materials because these materials could be found close to home. However, as the 18th century turned into the 19th century, concrete and metal tiles began to become more common.
Types of Roof Tiles
Roof tiles are a terrific way to personalise a home, but there is a wide range of options available in terms of cost, durability, weight, and aesthetic appeal. In order to provide you with a better grasp of what distinguishes one material from another, we have provided a breakdown of the nine most common varieties of roof tiles below.
Slate Roof Tiles
Slate is a type of natural stone that is distinguished by its one-of-a-kind and exquisite beauty. In addition to this, slate features some really striking colour changes that can only be produced by the passage of time and Mother Nature.
In addition to its durability and longevity, slate is also resistant to fire, making it an ideal material for roofing. As a consequence of this, it is possibly one of the most elegant materials ever used for roofing.
The disadvantage of using slate is that it is exceptionally heavy, which necessitates the reinforcement of the structure in order to withstand the additional weight. It is also very expensive to instal and difficult to handle, both of which contribute to the possibility of problems arising during repairs.
Metal Roof Tiles
Copper, aluminium, zinc, and steel are the four metals that are utilised the most frequently in the production of metal roof tiles. The most widely used of these materials are steel and aluminium in various forms.
A wide variety of barrel tiles, slate tiles, wood shake tiles, and even conventional shingle patterns can be imitated with metal tiles thanks to the wide variety of forms and patterns available for metal tiling.
The light weight and simple installation of metal roof tiles have contributed to their meteoric rise in popularity, yet these very qualities also contribute to the material's inherent drawbacks.
The typical packaging for metal roof tiles is in the form of strips. These strips are simply sheets of "tiles," which create the illusion of individually crafted and installed tiles despite the fact that it is only a succession of metal strips.
These 'roof tiles' can provide the impression of a roof that is tiled in a textured pattern at a fraction of the expense of the real thing. In addition, the standard pitch of the roof does not need to be as steep for these types of tiles to be laid, and they have a longer lifespan than traditional tiles.
Roofing tiles made of metal, as opposed to concrete or clay, for instance, can be a more lightweight alternative. Nevertheless, it is important to verify that the selected metal roof tiles may be put in accordance with the building standards on a residential property. Some metal roof tiles are only appropriate for use on outbuildings and other non-residential constructions.
The areas of the market that have the most demand for dependable roofing in a variety of styles at an affordable price are the greatest candidates for metal tile roofing.
It is less cumbersome to work with than long-run panels, is quicker to instal, and performs admirably in any harsh environment that mother nature may throw at it. It is lighter than concrete or clay tiles and is also easier to handle than long-run panels.
The market share for metal tile has increased by a factor of more than four over the course of the last decade, making it one of the home improvement categories with the highest rate of growth. The benefits offered by modern metal roofs make it possible for homeowners to improve the value of their homes by installing materials that have a longer lifespan.
- Metal is noisy (some enjoy it, some don't).
- Metal is prone to dings, which makes repairs challenging.
- When it is wet, metal surfaces are especially hazardous for walking on.
- Metal is a conductor of the ambient temperature and does not give a significant amount of insulating value.
Concrete Roof Tiles
The production of concrete roof tiles began in Bavaria in the middle of the 19th century. At the time, the primary components of concrete were readily available and did not cost very much.
These early tiles were manufactured by hand, but as time went on, modern manufacturing processes made concrete roof tiles one of the least expensive options for roof tiles available on the market. Concrete roof tiles are now one of the most popular options for roof tiles. Tiles constructed of concrete can be designed to seem like other materials, such as wood shakes, clay tiles, or slate tiles, and they have a highly appealing appearance.
Because of its extreme heaviness, concrete necessitates the use of a roof structure that has been strengthened in order to accommodate the additional weight that comes with using stone shingles.
In addition to this, they need roofing teams that are experienced with the instruments and processes necessary to correctly instal concrete roof tiles. In addition to this, the upkeep requirements for these materials are very similar to those for clay.
It is easy to fall into the trap of being unable to determine which profile or style of concrete roof tile is your preference because there are so many distinct profiles and designs available. However, roof tiles such as those made by Marley, Redland, and Forticrete have a lengthy life span. The majority of manufacturers state that these types of roof tiles have a life expectancy of at least fifty years, but they are anticipating them to survive even longer than that.
Concrete roof tiles have the additional benefit of having a very low cost, in addition to the benefit of having a very long life duration, which allows the tiles to pay for themselves.
Roofing tiles made of concrete have been used for several decades as an alternative to more conventional materials like clay and slate. However, concrete tiles are not always how you would expect them to be; in fact, many lovely old homes have copies constructed from concrete that are nearly indistinguishable from the originals in terms of appearance.
Concrete tiles are extremely adaptable since they can be purchased in a large variety of designs, dimensions, and forms, as well as colours, to accommodate a wide variety of property types.
Even though it has been present since the time of the Roman Empire, concrete is still considered to be one of the most common building materials used in countries all over the world today.
Because of its adaptability, concrete works well in a diverse range of architectural styles and colour palettes. Regardless of what era your home was built in or what aesthetic best reflects your personal taste, you can tailor the look of your concrete roof to achieve the precise look you want.
Concrete roof tiles are intended to be walked on and are durable enough to survive even the most severe climatic conditions.
Because concrete roof tiles are both dense and substantial, the weight of the tiles does not change even after intense precipitation has occurred. Frost will not cause the surface of the tile to delaminate, which is something that can happen to clay roof tiles in countries with cold climates.
Concrete roof tiles can be given multiple top coatings and coloured with oxides to increase their durability and make them more resistant to fading over time. In addition, the growth of algae, fungus, lichens, and moss is inhibited by the coated concrete roof tile surface.
Composite Roof Tiles
Composite roof tiles, just like Brava's fully synthetic roof tiles, are created from a combination of natural and man-made components. As a consequence of this, they have a number of benefits that are superior to those of tiles made of natural stone, wood, clay, metal, or concrete.
They are able to imitate the appearance of any tile roofing product with ease, and they offer individualised colour combinations for the majority of their patterns. In addition, they are easier to instal, come with solid warranties, and are typically lightweight enough to be handled by even the most inexperienced roofing professionals.
Solar Roof Tiles
Solar roof tiles can be installed in place of your home's regular roofing material. These tiles produce their own electricity and are connected to a battery assembly located inside the home. The residence then draws energy from the sun.
If you instal a sufficient number of solar tiles on your roof, you may see a significant reduction in your monthly electricity costs. There are a few distinct styles, but the majority of people are more concerned with how well they function as opposed to how appealing they look.
Solar roof tiles come at a premium price and require the installation, maintenance, and repair services of trained professionals in order to function properly. But for the consumer who thinks forwards, solar tiles are a step in the right direction when it comes to being environmentally conscious about the materials and methods used in building.
Solar roof tiles are an alternative to traditional solar panels that are now available. Solar tiles are integrated into the structure of the roof, thus they do not need to be attached to pre-existing rooftops using racking systems. Because a roof installation and a solar array may be merged into a single component, as a result, they can be a viable alternative in new constructions as well as large restorations. This makes them an attractive choice for both.
Solar shingles and solar roof tiles are both terms for the same product. If you want to maximise the amount of electricity produced with the area that is available, installing solar panels is the choice that is recommended. On the other hand, solar shingles give the impression of a normal roof without any panels, but they utilise the space available in a manner that is less effective.
Clay Roof Tiles
Roof tiles made of clay have been around for a very long time. Why? due to the fact that the fundamental components have always been easily accessible.
Tiles were fashioned by hand, allowed to dry in the sun, and then installed on the roof. The majority of the procedure is now carried out by machines, but the end result is just as aesthetically pleasing as it was before.
The majority of us are accustomed to the appearance of clay roofs in the form of barrel tiles or flat tiles. They are available in a range of colours and are sealed to prevent them from taking in any moisture.
Clay tiles are notoriously difficult to instal because of their extreme heaviness, propensity to shatter if not handled with extreme caution, and the requirement that installers have a significant amount of prior industry knowledge. In addition, a roof made of clay tiles, much like a roof made of concrete or slate, will require extensive reinforcing in order to sustain the additional weight of the clay.
Synthetic Spanish Barrel Roof Tiles
Brava's synthetic Spanish Barrel roof tiles can give your home the classic good looks of a Spanish villa without the added expense of having to reinforce the entirety of your roof. The care that is required for clay roof tiles can be eliminated entirely by using synthetic tiles, which are also recyclable, resistant to fire, and available in nearly an infinite number of colour combinations.
Synthetic Slate Roof Tiles
Synthetic or composite slate roof tiles have the appearance of natural slate but do not come with the weight and inconvenience of having to replace broken tiles. They also do not require the routine maintenance of checking gutters to ensure that there is no water backing up on the slate, which can cause tiles to break if they freeze during the winter.
Brava synthetic slate tiles are produced with an impact rating of Class 4 and are capable of being customised with an infinite number of colour options. They are not only lightweight, but also built from a composite material that is kind to the environment.
Synthetic Cedar Roof Tiles
The Brava Cedar Shake Roof Tile is the greatest replacement to real cedar shakes in terms of overall quality. The fact that they do not retain water means that they will not distort, break, split, or rot like real cedar shakes. They also do not attract fungus in the same way as real cedar shakes do.
The look of a cedar shake roof may be yours with these shingles, which are simple to instal, lightweight, and give the impression of shakes made from split cedar. Cedar shaking tiles from Brava come with a fire rating of Class A or Class C and an impact rating of Class 4, in contrast to untreated wood shingles, which only have a Class C rating. Your cedar shake tile roof will retain its stunning good looks for many years to come thanks to the extensive colour palette from which you can choose.
Surprisingly, natural slate, which is extracted from quarries all over the world, comes in a variety of colours, designs, and finishes.
The slate that is extracted from certain quarries has a more greyish appearance, whereas the slate extracted from other quarries has a more bluish or grayish-green tint. The image on the right demonstrates how the appearance of the natural slate at several quarries can vary widely from one location to the next.
This roof tile is of the classic sort and can be used almost anyplace, but it is particularly appropriate for use on listed buildings and in conservation areas.
Structural Clay Roof Tiles
The term "structural clay tile" refers to a category of building materials that are made from burned clay and are used for the construction of roofing, walls, and flooring for both structural and non-structural purposes, particularly in fireproofing applications.
The material is an extruded clay shape that has substantial depth, and it can also be called building tile, structural terra cotta, hollow tile, and clay block. This depth enables it to be laid in the same manner as other clay or concrete masonry. Other names for the material include building tile, hollow tile, and clay block.
Each component is often crafted out of clay or terracotta and features a number of cavities or cells that run throughout its interior. This material is frequently utilised in the construction of floor arches, as well as fireproofing, partition walls, and furring.
The application of clay tiles as a structural element in vertical applications is by far the most common and long-lasting kind of structural clay tile. The vertical application makes use of structural clay tile blocks in both the columns and load-bearing walls of the application.
In a similar fashion, structural clay tile blocks were widely employed to back exterior walls. These blocks would frequently fill the spaces that were found behind architectural adornment, stone, or brickwork. Clay tile blocks were traditionally employed as filler between structural sections in the early construction of steel buildings. This provided the much-required lateral support.
In some instances, whole walls—usually only seen in buildings with one storey and very rarely higher—were constructed out of structural clay tile. These tiles typically had a thickness of numerous wythes. It was possible to leave the cells of these blocks empty or to fill them with either grout or strengthening material.
Ceramic Roof Tiles
Tiles constructed of ceramic are composed of clay, sand, and ground glass. A significant number of ceramic tiles are produced from recycled and recyclable materials.
Ceramic tile can assist to keep your house cooler in the summer, which in turn will help to minimise the amount of energy (and money) you consume. In the colder months, they can even make your house more energy efficient by improving its insulation.
Walls, baths, backsplashes, and other surfaces can all benefit from the installation of ceramic tile. Ceramic tile is advantageous for both you and your property because it can be used in virtually every room.
Ceramic tile has a number of benefits, some of which include being beneficial to the environment, lowering the amount of allergens in the home, raising the value of the property, and being attractive, practical, and functional. In addition, dust and dust mites are not attracted to the smooth surface of ceramic tile.
There is less ambient dust in homes that have ceramic roof tiles, which makes the air in your home considerably healthier by reducing the quantity of allergens that are found in the average home. Those who suffer from allergies related to dust will find this to be an extremely beneficial benefit.
Polymeric Roof Tiles
It is a relatively new variety of shingles that is currently being extensively promoted on the domestic construction materials market and is beginning to have a good demand. The components that make up the structure of polymeric tile are the reason for its exceptionally high performance.
This high-quality washed sand, which, using the most cutting-edge technical processes, washed away all of the undesirable species and impurities, including clay and other undesirable species, as well as modern varieties of dye and high polymer content.
In terms of percentages, the final product is composed of each of these components in the following proportions: 70:29:1. In particular, this highlights the primary benefits and advantages that polymer shingles have over other forms of roofing materials that are functionally analogous.
High strength tiles are produced when the appropriate proportions of all of the aforementioned components are combined. These tiles are unbreakable throughout transport, installation, and even when they are dropped on the ground.
In contrast to the majority of other common roofing materials used today, the polymer-tiled roof is safe enough for people to walk on. First and foremost, it has a very long lifetime, which can be up to fifty years or more depending on a variety of conditions. In any event, in the same conditions, it is more long-lasting than natural tiles, and the only circumstance in which it is not worth it is when compared to galvanised steel.
Terracotta Roof Tiles
On a roof, terracotta roof tiles will not distort or deteriorate in the same way as asphalt roof tiles will. The colour of the terracotta tile won't change over time either, which is a bonus feature.
Terracotta tiles are very resilient in a variety of weather situations, including sunshine, rain, wind, snow, and ice. Because of these clay tiles' great insulating capacity, homeowners can realise cost savings on their monthly power costs during the course of the year. Both kinds of roof tiles call only minimal upkeep over their lifetimes.
Once terracotta roof tiles have been correctly laid, there is very little care that has to be done to them over the lifetime of the roof.
In the event that a piece of the roof is ever damaged or requires alteration (for example, installing a skylight), the only tiles that need to be replaced or removed are the ones that are damaged. It is possible to collect rainwater for reuse using terracotta roof tiles because they are non-toxic and, provided that the roof itself is clean and in good condition.
Pantile Roof Tiles
A type of burned roof tile that is often produced from clay, a pantile is also known as a pantile. It has the look of an S, and it is a single lap, which indicates that the end of the tile only laps the course that is immediately below it. Tiles that are flat typically span two courses.
A roof that is covered in pantiles is able to have a pitch that is lower since the pantiles are significantly lighter than the corresponding flat tiles.
Frequently Asked Questions About Roof Tiles
Clay and concrete are by far two of the longest-lasting roof tile materials available to buy. With a potential life expectancy of over 100 years, many clays and concrete roof tiles even outlive the property they've been installed on. Slate tiles are another top-level choice in terms of longevity.
Ridge – These tiles run along the top of your roof. These are generally concrete or clay. Hips – These are similar to the ridged bit. They run down the roof from the top to the bottom corners. These are generally concrete or clay.
Clay and concrete tiles can outperform many other roofing materials. However, clay is the more durable of the two, with the ability to last well over 100 years, as opposed to concrete tiles, which can last 30 to 50 years.
The most common materials used in metal roof tiles are copper, aluminium, zinc and steel. Of these materials, steel and aluminium are the most popular.
- Wood shakes and shingles for 15 to 20 years.
- Asphalt shingles: 10 to 30 years.
- Metal/steel: 50+ years.
- Slate: 50+ years.
- Tile and concrete: 50+ years.
- Foam: 25+ years.
- Built-Up roofs: 25-30 years.
- Single-Ply: 30+ years.