Are Concrete Roofing Tiles Right For Your Home?

A tile concrete roof is composed of sand, cement, water, and iron oxide (pigment) mixed, molded, and heated together. These concrete roof tiles serve as a water and weather-resistant layer over your home A concrete tile roof can last longer, up to 50 years, depending on a number of factors, including tile roof maintenance, underlayment quality, consistent inspection checks, and other factors.

Concrete tile roofs are known for their durability and longevity due to their ability to withstand the elements such as weather, wind, storm, rain, and snow.

Concrete Tiles: Features

Red Concrete Tile Roof Detail, Geometric Architectural Background

Lightweight or Standard Weight Options for a Concrete Tile Roof

Concrete tiles can be lightweight or standard weight, each with advantages and disadvantages. Although lightweight concrete tiles don’t add an extra pound to your house’s carrying weight, they’re not the most ideal for a long-lasting roof. Most lightweight concrete tiles have been discontinued.

Standard weight concrete tiles are the best option due to their strength and ability to withstand damage caused by harsh weather conditions, heavy rain, or snowfall.

Three Different Styles for Concrete Tiles

Concrete roof tiles also come in three different types: flat or no-curve profile tiles, low or small-curve profile tiles (less than or equal to 1-inch high for every 5 inches in width), and high or big-curve profile tiles (greater than 1-inch high for every 5 inches in width). A flat tile gives you a clean look that can fit the style of just about any home. Medium profile tiles give your home a Mediterranean vibe. High-profile tiles reflect the look of terracotta tiles that are found on a Spanish roof structure.

You can also opt between rough and smooth concrete tile roofs, depending on your preference and input from your expert roofing contractor.

Concrete Tile Roof Costs

Concrete tiled roofs are typically inexpensive but still more than an asphalt shingle roof. The lightweight concrete tiled roof is slightly more expensive than standard concrete tiles.

Concrete Tiles Come in Virtually Any Color

Concrete tiles are available in virtually any color. Brown and copper tones, for example, look exactly like clay tiles. Aside from earth tones, soft pastels such as purple and blue can be used. If you are unsure about a particular color, you may opt for a multi-color blend. A professional roofing contractor can assist you in your decision to help suit your aesthetic.

A Concrete Tile Roof Is Durable

home building construction roof tiles concrete. orange color

Concrete tiles have a Class A fire rating, are resistant to insects and rot, and can withstand winds of up to 150 miles per hour. Additionally, extreme temperatures pose little threat to concrete tiles when treated to withstand freeze-thaw cycles, expanding their appeal in cold-weather regions. Concrete tiles, according to the Tile Roofing Industry Alliance, also exceed seismic load requirements, indicating that the concrete roof can help to withstand earthquakes.

In fact, concrete tiles are among the most high-quality roofing materials one can purchase.

Save Money with a Concrete Tile Roof

Concrete roof tiles can also save you money by reducing the load on your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system. In addition to their excellent thermal properties, which absorb and emit heat gradually, proper installation of concrete roofing tiles creates air channels beneath individual tiles. These channels serve as a second layer of insulation, helping with energy conservation in both warm and cold weather.

Roofing installers of concrete roofing tiles typically use vented eave risers to create an opening for cool outside air to flow into the air channel and push hot air up and out of the structure to promote cooling ventilation.

Studies have shown that a concrete tile roof system can reduce heat transfer to an attic by nearly 50% when compared to an asphalt roof, which means relying less on air conditioning and heating after changing the roofing material.

Concrete Roofing Tiles Are Eco-Friendly

Toproof Tiled on Blue Sky background

Concrete is among the environmentally friendly roofing materials, not only because it rarely needs to be replaced and consumes less energy, but also because it is made of all-natural, ready-to-recycle materials. Asphalt shingles must be replaced often and account for approximately 8% of total construction and demolition waste, representing a significant portion of landfill space.

In addition, a concrete roof reflects sunlight, helping homeowners to keep energy usage down. Concrete roof tiles meet the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design’s (LEED) requirements.

Environmentally conscious homeowners gravitate to using concrete roof tiles in lieu of asphalt shingles and other roofing materials and roof tiles.

Other Considerations When Looking at Concrete Roof Tiles

Although concrete roof tiles are cost-effective, there is an upfront installation expense that is more than traditional roofing tiles. But the long-term cost savings in lower utilities and durability make these clay tiles a worthwhile investment for homeowners.

It’s important to note that concrete roof tiles, despite their durability, can crack from fallen tree branches or hail. It’s prudent to remove any trees overhanging your roof prior to concrete tile installation to reduce the chance of cracked tiles after a severe storm.

The weight of concrete roof tiles is also a consideration. If you’re switching from non-tile materials such as asphalt shingles or shakes, a structural engineer will be needed to determine whether your roof can bear the weight of concrete tiles and perhaps make reinforcements prior to installation. This adds to the cost of the roofing project.

Also, if you are considering concrete roof tiles versus traditional clay tiles, be aware that a concrete roof is more affordable. There are other differences as well that we can discuss with you.

Work with A Professional for Your Concrete Roof Tiles

Work with a local roofing contractor who can assist you with your concrete roof tiles installation. Roof Worx, based in Thornton, Colorado, and serving homeowners and businesses in Denver, Aurora, Colorado Springs, Fort Collins, and surrounding communities, is ready to provide you with the information you need for your roofing project. We’ll go over the costs of concrete roof tiles and other alternative roof tiles you may want to consider.