What You Need To Know About Tile Roofing

Tiled roofing systems are beautiful and durable. On the other hand, they are heavy and expensive, but that’s something you can expect from a roofing system that can give you up to 100 years of protection. Traditionally, tile roofing systems were made from fired clay, terra cotta product, or slate, but today’s roofing tiles are more often made from molded, color-shaded concrete. Roofing tiles are available in multiple shapes, including curved, fluted, flat, interlocking, and more. 

Tile roofing is a perfect option for roofs experiencing hot weather or exposure to salt air. This is why you’ll very often spot tile roofs in Tampa, FL, and the wider Southwest. You’ll also find tile roofs in areas that receive infrequent rains that dump lots of water in a short time. It’s because many tile styles are excellent at shedding rainfall from heavy cloudbursts. If you’re considering tile roofing for your home, here are its pros and cons to help you make an informed decision.

Pros of Tile Roofing

Here are the key advantages of tile roofing.


  • Long-lasting: A well-installed tile roof can last up to 100 years or more, especially when installed in the appropriate climate. Concrete and clay tile roofs have been known to withstand high winds, hail, and even fire. 
  • Resistant to rot and damage by insects: Unlike wood roofing systems, tiles roofs will not decay. 
  • Friendly to the environment: Tile roofs are made of earth minerals, and they can be easily recycled when removed.
  • Energy-efficient: Tiles provide a heavy thermal mass which helps to regulate temperatures in your home. 
  • Low maintenance: With tile roofs, you’ll rarely hear of leaks, and it’s rare to find a tile roof requiring repairs or maintenance unless something heavy falls on it during a storm.
  • Plenty of choices: Concrete, clay, and slate tiles come in a broad range of colors and styles to match your home. Some styles even mimic traditional wood shakes.
  • Low long-term cost: Although tiles are expensive to install upfront, they cost less in the long term. You’ll spend less on maintenance, and they can last up to 100 years.


Cons of Tile Roofing

Tile roofing systems also have some disadvantages that make them inappropriate for some roofing styles or climates.

  • High cost: A typical tile roof can cost two to three times more than an asphalt shingle roof. But the long life of a tile roof can easily offset this cost in the long-term.
  • Difficult installation: You’ll need a professional roofing contractor with extensive experience to correctly install tile roofing systems. 
  • Heavyweight: Your roof’s structure must be stable and strong enough to handle the weight of a tile roof. Clay tiles can weigh as much as 850 pounds per square while asphalt shingles weigh just about 300 pounds per square.
  • Tiles are brittle: While tiles are very durable, they can easily break under a heavy impact. Falling tree branches during storms or walking on tile roofs can damage your tile roof, and the repairs are often expensive.
  • Not suitable for low-slope roofs: Tiles work well for roofs with steeper slopes and should not be used for pitches less than 4:12.
  • Some tiles fade with age: Although they can be painted, you’ll need to repaint every few years to keep up the looks.

Difference Between Tile Roofing and Shingle Roofing

Tile roofs are distinctively different from shingle roofs. In a nutshell, both roofing systems often show similar traits and appearance, but the appearance is where the similarity ends. 

In summary, here are the key difference between tile roofs and shingle roofs:

  • Shingles are more affordable to buy and install
  • Tile may be more expensive up front, but it lasts about twice as long as shingles
  • Both will last a long time if they have regular maintenance done on them
  • Tile holds its value better than shingles
  • Shingles are better for most climates
  • Clay tiles handle heat very well
  • Shingles are lighter and require less structural support
  • Tiles have many styles to choose from, whereas shingles have less
  • Shingles aren’t environmentally friendly
  • No matter which one is chosen, it needs to be properly installed by a reputable contractor

Ultimately, tile roofing systems require professional installation by reputable contractors to last a lifetime. Unlike shingles that are fixed into position using industrial nails, tiles must be expertly interlocked to prevent rainwater from seeping through your roof. If you’re planning to install a tile roofing system in Tampa, FL, consider working with Imperial Roofing. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation quote.