Concrete roof tiles have made major improvements in recent years in both quality and style. While concrete tiles were once available in one style that was brittle and prone to cracks, today's concrete roof tiles can mimic the look of slate, cedar or ceramic while lasting for several years more than acrylic or fibreglass roofing materials. The biggest choice when it comes to the type of concrete tile is the style.
One of the more traditional roof tile shapes, and one of the three profiles available in concrete roof tiles is the S-tile. The S-tile shape was made popular in Spanish villas, using ceramic or clay tiles, which form the shape of the letter "S" in three dimensions. The convex portion of the S is meant to snap into the convex portion of the next tile, allowing the tiles to overlap themselves on the roof. This provides both coverage from rain and the elements, and a pleasing, arched style. Most S-tiles measure approximately 17 inches long and are available in edge tiles as well.
A more understated version of traditional roofing tiles is the double-S or low-profile tile. Concrete tiles are available in this more subtle design. The double-S tile curves similarly to the standard S-tile, both repeats the curve twice with a rise of not five times the width of the tile. This results in a gently curving concrete roof with greater overlap and protection. This type of concrete roof tile is perfect for areas with high winds where a lower profile tile will help prevent damage to the roof over time.
Concrete tiles are available with additives and fibreglass reinforcements to enable multiple shapes. Included in the types of concrete tiles available on the market today are flat tiles.
Flat tiles mimic either the look of cedar shingles or the look of slate tiles with less maintenance or expense. The tiles are made to overlap one another slightly on the top edge, moving up the roof. They are available in colours and textures to resemble the natural product they are replacing.