The two most popular roofing materials in Australia are Colorbond steel or cement tiles. Both materials offer good insulation, are extremely durable in our harsh climate, are available in a range of colours and styles and are aesthetically pleasing.

So, whether you are building a new home or looking to replace your current roof, are you having trouble deciding on the type of roof you want?  Keep in mind factors such as budget, the style of your home, functionality and even location.

What Is the Difference Between Colorbond & Tiles?

The cement tiles used for roofs are made from a mixture of concrete, sand and water which is moulded under heat and high pressure. Tiling a roof involves laying them individually, holding them together with cement work, which is known as bedding and pointing. Bedding is the mortar that the tile caps sit on, over the ridges, valleys and gables. Pointing is a flexible material that sits over the bedding, preventing cracking.

Colorbond is extremely long lasting, particularly in our harsh climate and it can stand up to the hot sun, heavy rain and extreme winds. It is tested in Australia under some of the toughest conditions. Colorbond is manufactured by BlueScope Steel and is made up of 5 layers – a steel base is coated with a metallic coating to provide corrosion resistance, followed by a pre-treatment layer to optimise the adhesion of the next layers. The fourth layer is a corrosion inhibitive primer baked on the surface, with the final layer being a topcoat of specially developed exterior grade paint that is also baked on so it resists blistering, flaking and chipping. It can be made in many different colours to suit the exterior of your home and also comes in a range of different profiles.

The Benefits of Colorbond & Tiles

While they are both excellent products, there are benefits as well as some downsides to these roofing materials so it is important to do your research and speak to a professional roofing team prior to making a decision.

A Colorbond roof can be more expensive than tiles, but there are many good points to consider.

Colorbond Benefits

  • With a contemporary appearance, a Colorbond roof has great curb appeal and can add value to your home.
  • As mentioned, Colorbond is very durable and will withstand the worst weather extremely well, for many years.
  • They are quieter than you may think if the correct insulation is used, along with an acoustic covering if required. Loud rain on the roof need not be an issue.
  • A large range of colour options means you will easily find one to complement the style and colour theme of your home’s exterior. When choosing gutters, downpipes and fascias, a contrasting colour can be used. Different styles are also available.
  • Very little maintenance is needed for a Colorbond roof. It may need a good clean from time to time but is not as susceptible to damage as a tiled roof.
  • Colorbond reflects more of the sun’s heat, providing great thermal insulation.
  • Environmentally friendly, Colorbond is made from recycled materials and can be 100% recycled.

Colorbond Disadvantages

  • A Colorbond roof can be expensive, depending on the size of your home, but it can be in excess of $20k.
  • These roofs may be noisy if not installed with the correct soundproofing.

As a more cost-effective option, perhaps a tiled roof is your preference, or you simply like the look of them.

Tile Benefits

  • Concrete tiles are very strong and robust in all weather conditions, withstanding elements such as hail that a Colorbond roof may not. They will last for decades and are relatively easy to repair.
  • Available in many different styles and profiles, tiles can also be painted so you can easily update your home. Tiles provide a charming character to your home’s exterior.
  • Tiled roofs offer fantastic sound insulation and acoustic performance as they are a heavy material.
  • Tiles will retain heat during winter and cool air during summer, so they also offer good thermal efficiency.
  • Cost effective, especially if you require repairs as you may find some second-hand tiles to match if you need to replace any broken ones. A complete roof restoration will cost about $6k to $10k depending on the size of the roof and its condition.

Tile Disadvantages

  • The main disadvantage of a tiled roof is the maintenance. They are more prone to damage and require more regular maintenance than a Colorbond roof. Damage from weather can cause shifts and cracks, resulting in leaks.

Speak to the roofing expert team at Roof Guard who will offer you the best, most cost-effective roofing option for your property. Whether that involves repairs or a full restoration or replacement, their qualified tradespeople are professional and efficient. Beautify your home with a great roof now!