Tile Roofing

Tile Roofing

If you are looking for something different with your roofing, the consider having tile installed. Tile roofing goes all the way back to the ancient Greeks and has evolved into several different options. As you start to put together your roofing project, ask your roofer about the different types of tile roofing available and the costs for each type.

A Word about Tile

Tile roofing is designed to be able to withstand the wind and rain associated with just about any climate. However, most tile roofing is unable to withstand ice and snow. There are alternatives to real tile that can still give you that same look, but are made from materials that would stand up better in the cold weather. Instead of going with real tile in an area that experiences snowy winters, you may want to go with an alternative that is more suited for your area.

Flat Tiles

Flat tiles are made from clay, wood, stone, plastic or concrete. You can also get flat tiles that are made from materials that can gather and store solar energy. Flat tiles can be installed in a few different ways, but the most common way is called the beaver tail pattern. This is an overlapping pattern which creates a look that is familiar to people who live in Europe or the warmer parts of North America.

Imbrex Tiles

These are tiles that were first invented ancient Rome and wound up becoming a significant part of Roman architecture. These tiles fit together to form channels that carries the water away from the home and into a gutter system. The Romans based the idea for these tiles on their aqueduct systems that were used to bring water to the Roman communities that were miles from a real water source.

Roman Tiles

Another roofing tile that was developed by the ancient Romans and has not changed much in the past few centuries. Along with flat tiles, the Roman tiles are one of the more recognizable patterns in the world. They have a flat channel in the middle and opposing curves on each side. As with the Imbrex tiles, the Roman tiles fit together to create a recognizable and functioning pattern that is extremely efficient at moving water and breaking up wind gusts as they crossed over the tiles.


Pantiles gained fame in the late 19th century in Britain and in the United States. The are a tile that looks like half of a Roman tile, without the flat channel going down the middle. Pantiles are S-shaped to make them easier to lock together and create a protective covering for the building. Pantiles do not necessarily lock together, as Roman tiles would, but they do fit together in a particular way that makes them an effective tile design.

Barrel Tiles

Barrel tiles are simply clay or some other material that was formed in the shape of a cylinder and then cut in half. Despite their name, barrel tiles were originally created using logs or by wrapping material around the leg of the craftsman. Barrel tiles are not as common as they used to be, but they are available in clay, plastic or vinyl.

Interlocking Pantiles

These are pantiles that are specifically designed to interlock and create a barrier from the elements. Real pantiles do not fit as snug as professional roofers would like, which is why this interlocking version was created. These interlocking pantiles are extremely popular in Europe and warmer climates all around the world.


No tile roof goes together without antefixes to bring it all together. Antefixes are used to terminate rows of tile and hold them in place after the installation is completed.

Hanging Tile Roofing

Tile roofing and asphalt shingles are installed using similar methods. There is a wooden roof deck that is covered in a weather barrier, which is usually a roll of felt. Then the tiles are hung on the deck, usually one at a time. Most types of roofing tile have specialty pieces that are used for inside corners, outside corners and other areas where standard tiles will not work. The interlocking element of most tile roofs is what makes them popular to this day and it is also what helps these kinds of roofs to be able to move water away from the home and keep the home dry. In most cases, roofing tiles are treated with a special weatherproofing material to extend their lives and enhance the homeowner's investment.

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