The Pros And Cons Of Concrete Vs. Clay Roofing Tiles

Tile roofing is a popular request for roofing contractors, especially in areas with warmer climates and mild winters. The reason for its popularity is partly due to its incredible longevity and natural energy efficiency. A newer option in tile roofing is concrete rather than clay tiles. Here are a few of the pros and cons of asking your roofing contractor to install concrete rather than clay tile.



One of the reasons that homeowners choose concrete over clay is the cost savings. Concrete has many of the same properties as clay but without the added expense. On average, you can expect to pay between $10 and $20 per square foot for concrete tile whereas clay typically runs between $12.50 and $25.00 per square foot. That extra cost can add up to thousands at the end of the project. Ask your roofing contractor for a quote for both materials on your specific project to figure out the exact costs.


Another major benefit of choosing concrete over clay tile is the option for different aesthetics. With clay tile you get one look, but concrete tile can be created to mimic the look of slate and even wood. That massively opens up the variety of aesthetic options while still providing many of the same benefits of clay tile.


Unlike many roofing materials, concrete tile is totally fireproof, and that massively increases the safety of your home.


Concrete tile is also incredibly durable, especially against high winds and impacts. Concrete can also handle the weight of heavy snowfall much better than clay tile.


More Water Absorption

One drawback of choosing concrete over clay tile is that concrete tends to absorb more water than clay. That can increase the likelihood of mold and mildew growth in wet climates.

More Weight

Both concrete and clay are very heavy roofing materials, but because of concrete's additional moisture-absorptive properties, it can end up weighing even more than clay on wet or humid days. It's essential to have the proper roofing structure to handle the weight of the material. That's why it's often best as a new construction option rather than as a material for re-models, especially on roofs that previously had lightweight materials like asphalt shingles.

Color Fading

The color in clay tile is a natural part of its material but with concrete it's often an addition, especially if you choose to mimic another material like wood or slate. For this reason, the color is prone to fading over time.

Reach out to a roofing contractor in your area to learn more.