What Is a Clay Tile Roof? Types, Benefits, and Challenges
When we think about our homes, the first thing that comes to mind is family and the lives we built inside them. If we take a step back we can see that the outside of our homes also add a bit more personality, the paint, the style in which it was built, and its roof. The roofs on our houses can accentuate the aesthetic and personality we wish our homes to express. Tile roofing can be seen as the best example of this since it’s considered one of the most durable and beautiful ways to go about roofing style for your home. Tile roofing is very popular amongst homeowners because if it’s installed and maintained properly, it can last a surprisingly long time.
Now, when it comes to selecting the type of tile you want for your home, you have a wide variety of different types of tiles you can select from. Some are more expensive than others. Above all, clay tiles seem to be the most popular. In this article, we want to share with you what clay tiles are, the different types, benefits, and some of the challenges you may encounter when having a tile roof.
What are clay tiles?
Clay tiles are considered one of the oldest roofing materials. Throughout time, It has always been easy to just get it directly from the ground. Many civilizations have worked with clay coming up with different types of hardening processes, molding, and shaping. As it goes, clay tiles have protected the homes of many different civilizations from the harshness of the elements. These semi-cylindrical-shaped tiles are always an attractive option for decoration, home design, and safety. Nowadays, clay tiles are still being widely used both for their aesthetics and durability, they are easy to spot anywhere.
This style is one of the most commonly used ones. Some people may also refer to them as “pan tiles”, probably because of their shape which creates a pen and lid effect. It’s a semi-cylindrical tile inspired by Spanish, French, and Italian architecture. This tile is known for creating a distinctive look on the roof that may change as the sunlight casts down on it, causing the shadow to change. They can be laid in straight rows or staggered, this helps with channeling rainwater off your roof and gives it a more rustic look.
One of the most identifying characteristics of the Spanish roof tile is the shape it has, this is because it resembles the letter S. This shape allows the roof to present a particular rippling effect across it. This also allows for water to be channeled easily off of the roof. These are perfect where rain is few and far between but when it does rain it pours since these rows create grooves for the water to easily be carried through.
One of the main identifying features of the French tiles is the prominence of the two flutes on each tile. These flutes provide a great drainage system for rainwater and when it casts their shadow it provides a unique look to the home. This tile is quite large and can be easily installed as it has interlocking slides and a top.
This specific type of tile has a peculiar feature. It can be applied in two different ways. The first way is to simply interlock the tiles creating a puzzle piece effect on the roof. The second way that it can be applied is by overlapping the tiles one over another which will create a layered effect on the roof and allows more creative freedom for your roof design.
Some Advantages of a Tile Roof
Under the correct conditions, your roof could last up to close to 100 years with clay tiles. Normally these would last from 30 to 60 years with the correct maintenance. Clay tile roofs are able to withstand even the harshest of the elements like hail, high winds, fire, and even drastic changes in temperature. This type of durability allows you to save money on replacing tiles because unlike other tiles clay will not decay. Repairs on these types of roofs are very uncommon since the tile will not break unless it suffers from a heavy impact. Another positive aspect is that in case you sell your property since they last so long you would probably not have to incur into updating or replacing your roof and sell your house as-is.
The look clay tiles give to your home can be absolutely stunning. The rich terracotta color emanates an air of European architecture and provides a great quality look to your home. They can also come in a wide variety of colors. Clay tile is high quality and adds so much style to your home. The different tile styles allow for a wide range of customization to your home. By doing this the look of your home will be greatly enhanced. These tiles have so much versatility that they can be used for styles like medieval or colonial to modern or contemporary.
Eco-Friendly & Enhances savings
Since clay is easily derived from the earth, the method of disposal of this material is quite simple. It can be pulverized and recycled to create other clay items. These tiles also help regulate indoor temperature, so you may not need to turn on your AC as often and this, in turn, represents energy savings. Temperature regulation can be vital for places that constantly have hot weather since it can keep the inside of your house cool and fresh. Due to their long durability, the cost of maintaining the tiles goes way down. This could save you hundreds of dollars every year.
Some Cons of Having a Tile Roof.
Although these tiles come with many benefits, they do come with some drawbacks. Clay tiles are considered one of the most expensive tiles to have on a home. It can cost up to more than 3 times the average cost of an asphalt roof. The cost of installation of the tiles can be quite expensive since you need to contact expert professionals for this type of installation.
Clay tiles have been proved to be quite difficult to install. So for the installation, we highly recommend you seek professional help. Roofing experts who have ample experience working with these materials and these types of installations before and can handle the job professionally. This is NOT a DIY job, reach out to your trusted roofing company for the installation of your clay tile roof. The amount of time the installation can take may vary depending on the size of the home. Also, the tiles can be quite brittle so in the hands of an average person they can break if not cared for properly.
It’s not for all roofs
Experts recommend that if you want to install a clay tile roof in your home, its pitch must be at a minimum of 4/12, which means that the roof rises 4” for every 12” heading towards the peak.
Clay tiles are made for somewhat sharp slopes. If these slopes are lower than the intended ratio several things can occur like, the tiles won’t be used to their full extent since they won’t be able to carry out their intended effects with the shadows or funnel of the water on the roof after it rains.