A home with tile roofing in Arizona

Tile Roof

Tile roofing is an extremely attractive addition to any home. There are three types of tile roofing available in Arizona: concrete, clay, and Mexican Sandcast. We professionally install and repair all types of tile roofing materials and have good business relationships with several of the key manufacturers.

Sometimes roofers claim tile roofs have a lifetime warranty. What many people fail to realize is that while the tile itself may have a lifetime warranty, the underlayment will not last a lifetime.

Contrary to what many homeowners believe, it’s not the concrete tiles (or clay tiles) on your roof that provides the waterproofing element – but the underlayment. The tile itself is mostly cosmetic and provides protection from the sun and the elements for the underlayment. The underlayment itself is the waterproof layer of your roof.

Working together, a proper underlayment with a tile roof is the most enduring roofing material available. Well preserved century-old houses often are seen with their original tile roofs intact. On average, a properly installed tile roof can last an average of 50 years.

concrete tile roofing in Phoenix

Concrete Tile Roofing

Concrete roof tile is made of sand, concrete, and water.  The exact materials vary somewhat with each manufacturer but basically contain Portland concrete, blended hydraulic concretes and fly ash, sand, and other aggregates.  The products from most manufacturers look very similar in size and shapes and colors.  There are several manufacturers of concrete tile and we have a business relationship with the two primary manufacturers who distribute to the Arizona market. Most concrete tile will last 50 plus years. This tile does require periodic maintenance because any tile has a tendency to break or crack with some heat shifting in the foundation, wind, and hail. This tile is the most durable of all the tiles manufactured.

Concrete tiles have additional water locks or interlocking ribs on the edges that prevent water infiltration. Concrete tiles come in three main appearances:

  1. Flat profile – no curves.
  2. Low Profile – small curves and has a rise to width ratio equal to 1:5 or less.
  3. High Profile: large curves and has a rise to width ratio greater than 1:5.

Concrete tiles can simulate the appearance of traditional clay tiles, wood shake, slate and stone. Like clay, concrete tile surfaces can be textured or smooth, and tile edges can be ragged or uniform. They are resistant to hail, wind, and fire, making them a very safe roofing material when properly installed.

clay tile roofing Arizona

Clay Tile Roofing

Clay tiles are produced by baking molded clay. The density of the clay is determined by the length of time and temperature at which it is heated. Colors of clay tiles range from shades of white, yellow, orange and brown.

The most used clay color is Terra-Cotta. Another alternative to these natural earth tones is to add enamels to the tile and make any color of roof tiles. This process is called “ceramic” and consists of spraying enamel over the tile before baking it.

High temperatures of the kiln permanently bond this color to the clay tile so it will not peel or fade. As a result, there is a wide variety of tile profiles, styles, finishes, and colors available. Because clay tiles are made from natural earth derived material, they are environmentally friendly and easily recycled.

Clay tiles are resistant to strong winds and cannot be destroyed in a fire. Because of the way they are shaped, clay tiles protect the underlayment of your roof, while also creating an air pocket thereby helping to insulate and isolate any unwanted heat or cold from being transferred to your home’s attic space.

The cost for clay will average close to 50% based on cost or materials and labor to install.

While both concrete and clay tiles outperform most other roofing materials in durability, at the end of the day clay is a more durable material than concrete. Concrete tiles may last between 30 to 50 years, while clay tiles may well last over 100 years.


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