Whether you are building a new property or want to replace the existing roof, the materials you choose can make all the difference. The roof is one of the most dominant features of a property, taking up to 20-30% of the exterior look. The planning stage is very important therefore, to get the right look and roofing materials that are the most durable and effective. The main materials used in the UK are slate, concrete and clay tiles. There is a wider choice available though and here we are looking at different options in more detail. Considerations will include the scope, cost, environmental friendliness and expertise needed and whether the material suits the local area.
This is a pricey option for roof coverings and will probably only be considered where there is a historical reason for using it – as in the Cotswolds or the Pennines. Sedimentary rock will separate naturally into thinner parts, similar to slate. This makes it a good roofing material, heavy and strong, but stone does require a steep pitch and most likely, roofing specialists. Clay or metal ridge tiles are often used with stone as stone is difficult to mould into curves. They are laid out with tiles larger at the base and smaller tiles going up.
This is a very popular material for roofing and there are a wide variety of tiles available in concrete. The tiles provide good waterproofing qualities. They can be used in a shallow-pitched roof, are economically viable and offer a strong, safe roofing material. There are a wide variety of finishes, textures and colours to choose from, including vintage looks and double-roman. The only downside is that the concrete tiles do not have the same life expectancy as stone and can weather more quickly. They offer greater flexibility and can be adapted easily to fit more complex shapes, curves and gulleys, for example. For advice from a Cheltenham Roofer, visit stormroofingltd.co.uk/
Metal roofing may seem like a modern invention, but copper has been used in the roof for hundreds of years, especially for dome decoration and the flat lead roofing of the reign of Elizabeth I. Today, materials such as aluminium and zinc can be used for the roof and it a very good choice for complex shapes and curves. It is very durable but does have some environmental concerns over the method of production. It can be attractive to thieves because of the high value and run-off can also be a concern. Steel tiles are common in Europe because they are lightweight, hi-tech and can be used on low-pitched roofs.
Popular in the UK because of its natural abundance. It is easily divided to form a thin section perfect for tiling. To make them water-tight, they must be strictly overlapped and laid on battens above the bottom. A pitch of at least 30 degrees is required and clay or ceramic metal ridges need to be applied because of the shaping difficulty. More modern varieties are available in various colours, but they are usually coloured grey.