Choosing Roofing Materials—Slate, Metal, and Ceramic

Today’s roofing options are many. Whether you are looking to put a roof on a new building or are adding an addition or re-roofing, you will need to decide which type of roofing to use. The decision can be tough. Choices range from asphalt shingles to many other interesting options such as slate, metal or ceramic. Roofers in Austin, Texas know which options will work best for your house. As you are making the decision be sure to talk with a roofer like Accent Roofing to help you know what is best for your use.

A roof being fireproof can be very important and having a long lasting roof that will not require extensive maintenance also plays into the decision. Asphalt shingles are the most used roofing material but there are other types to consider.


Slate is rarely used these days due to expense. It is beautiful and lasts many years but requires a heavier roof support structure to hold it. This is what makes it so expensive. In today’s market it is more likely that a person will use an engineered product that is fabricated to look like slate but is actually made of rubber and plastic. These fake slate shingles weight about 1/3rd of the weight of a real slate shingle and cost about 1/3rd the price. These fake-slate shingles can be installed using standard tools and techniques which also help to keep costs down. These shingles are guaranteed to last up to 50 years.


For many years metal roofs made of corrugated, galvanized metal sheets have been a standard on barns, sheds, and other agricultural and utility buildings. While being cheap this type of roof is also rugged and long-lasting. It can be installed easily and is perfect for many different applications.

In the metal roof category we also have copper roofs. They are elegant and graceful and found on many public buildings and fine mansions. Large roofs are covered using the “standing-seam” method which creates a water-tight seam.

Many different versions of metal roof are available. There are a variety of powder-coated steel roof systems on the market. Factory-built standing seam roofs can be custom made to your house or building. Several types of metal shingles are also offered. Regardless of the type of metal roof you choose when properly installed it should last at least 50 years.

Ceramic (Clay)

Barrel tiles are the most common type of ceramic tile. They resemble half cylinders and run about 16 inches long. They can be handmade but are more likely to be machine produced. Tile roofs are quite heavy and require special roof framing to support the weight. Once the waterproof under lining is laid the clay tiles are laid one by one in a pad of mortar. The whole process is quite labor intensive. Expense- wise this type of roof will cost about 3 times the cost of a standard asphalt shingle roof which means this type of roof is rarely used. But in terms of being cost effective it might win since a well installed tile roof will last 60 to 80 years, many times outliving the house’s owners.

As you are trying to decide exactly which roofing material to use consult with roofers in Austin, Texas like Accent Roofers. They will be able to tell you what will work best for your house while meeting your financial expectations.

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