Clay Tiles: the Pros and Cons

Clay tiles are a frequently-used pitched roofing material. Lots of people see them as an attractive and stylish option and they’re particularly common in Mediterranean countries. Some of their advantages are that they’re low maintenance and long-lasting.

But clay tiles aren’t ideal for all pitched roofs and have downsides that other roofing materials don’t have. To help you work out if you want clay tiles on your pitched roof, we’ve come up with a list of their pros and cons.


Environmentally friendly

Clay tiles are fairly environmentally friendly. This is due to the fact that they’re made out of natural materials. Clay doesn’t need manufacturing and can be recycled easily.

Low maintenance

Clay tiles are very low maintenance. They may need washing if they develop mildew or moss growth but this is relatively unlikely.

Long lasting

Clay tiles can last for a long time. If you maintain and install them correctly then your roof could last more than 50 years.

Fire and weather resistant

Clay tiles are fire and weather resistant. This lowers the risk of fire damage to your home and reduces the likelihood that your tiles will need replacing.


Clay tiles are versatile. You can get clay in oranges, browns and yellows and coat tiles in enamel to create even more colours. They’re also available is lots of different sizes and shapes.


Brittle and breakable

In cold temperatures, clay tiles can become brittle. This is because whenever they freeze and thaw they become slightly weaker. Brittle tiles are more likely to break when put under pressure.

Even in warmer temperatures, clay tiles are still fragile and easily broken. This means that they’re not suitable for walking on.


Clay tiles are heavy. Although much lighter than concrete tiles, clay tiles can still put a significant amount of pressure on your roof. This means that they’re not appropriate for weaker structures and your roof might need reinforcing before you install them.

Not completely wind resistant

Clay tiles aren’t 100% wind resistant. Although they have high wind resistance compared to other roofing materials, they can still move around or fall off roofs in strong winds.

So clay tiles have a range of pros and cons. If you want to install clay tiles on your roof and are after a professional to do it, complete our online form. We’ll connect you with up to 4 local roofers.

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