Clay vs. Concrete Roofs

Choosing your hard materials.

As you plan any type of roofing project, decisions can have long-term effects, so doing proper research is necessary. Whether considering clay roofing tiles or concrete systems, there are pros and cons to each option. Making the right choice for a commercial, multifamily or residential structure will help an owner or manager in the long run.

Clay Tiles

Clay tiles are made by baking molded clay, and are usually heavier in weight than most other roofing materials. They can range in shades of white, orange, yellow or brown, but the most popular color they come in is terra cotta. Clay tiles have been used for centuries on roofs for their durability and because they tend to hold their color better than concrete tiles.

Concrete Tiles

Concrete tiles are made of a mixture of sand, cement and water molded under high heat and pressure. These tiles are heavier than most (including clay tiles) and are more durable than other materials. Color options vary, and texture can be smooth or rough.


The durability of your roofing material is important to keep in mind when considering roofing materials. Both clay and concrete tiles can outperform other materials when it comes to withstanding weather and the test of time. Clay is more prone to resist rot, insects and other pests, while concrete is more water resistant. Both can withstand extremes of heat and cold, making them suitable for use in virtually any climate.


Longevity differs between the two types, but both can last for long periods of time. A roof constructed of concrete or clay may be the last roof you will ever need. Clay or slate tiles can last more than 100 years, while most concrete tile comes with a life expectancy. The long life span of each material means you can save money in the future by not needing to replace as often.


Cost is something to always consider for any roofing project. Concrete tiles are a more affordable roofing option when compared to clay tiles, costing anywhere from $400 to $900 per 100 square feet. Clay tiles can cost anywhere from $700 to $1,000 per 100 square feet, while high-end clay tiles cost as much as $3,000 per 100 square feet. Both materials are heavy, so installation tends to be more expensive.

Whether you’re considering clay or concrete tiles for your next roofing project, American Roofing & Waterproofing is right for either job. Our high quality materials and craftsmanship make us the Arizona roofing experts for any roof type.

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