Clay tile roofing is one of the oldest and most used types of roofing in the world. There has been evidence found of its use dating back to 10,000 BC, and in locations from North America, to Egypt, to Rome. Its use and popularity fluctuates over time, but it is always there on some level. A well cared for roof of this type can last for over 100 years. Though clay tiles have many advantages, they do have their disadvantages as well. Here's a look at a few of each.
Of the many advantages of clay tile roofing, it durability is probably the biggest one. Any roofing material that can last for over 100 years has to be good! Another advantage is that it is available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, unlike regular shingles, adding more character and interest to the appearance of your home. It also has reflective properties, which help to increase the efficiency of heating and cooling systems. This type of material is not susceptible to mold or rot, can withstand hurricane-force winds, and does not shrink and expand with the temperature like wood.
As wonderful as clay tile roofing is, it does come with disadvantages as well. The first is the weight of the individual tiles. If your home already has this type of roof, then the roof was built strong enough to support it. However, if you are installing them for the first time, you need to be sure that your roof can support the weight. You may need to add support beams before beginning installation. The other real disadvantage is the cost. Though much more expensive than other types of roofing materials initially, the fact that they probably will never need replaced should be considered. Concrete tiles with many of the same properties are available as well. Many people choose this as a substitute for clay.