Composite tiles: types, technical characteristics, advantages and disadvantages

Homeowners looking for a roofing option that combines durability and aesthetic appeal are increasingly choosing composite tiles. These tiles are made from an engineered mixture of materials, usually asphalt, fiberglass, and recycled plastics. When these materials are combined, a product is created that has additional benefits while still having an appearance similar to that of traditional roofing materials like wood shakes or slate.

There are numerous varieties of composite tiles on the market, each with special qualities of its own. Some have a textured surface to more closely mimic the appearance of natural materials, while others have a smooth surface for a sleek, contemporary design. While each brand and type has different technical specs, composite tiles generally have advantages like lightweight construction that puts less stress on the roof structure than heavier materials.

The longevity of composite tiles is one of their main benefits. Strong winds, a lot of rain, and even hail are all things that they are made to resist. Composite tiles provide long-term protection for your home by maintaining their shape and integrity, unlike traditional materials that may crack or warp over time.

Composite tiles have certain disadvantages to take into account despite their advantages. Their propensity to fade with time from exposure to sunlight is one common worry. Even though producers have upgraded their UV-resistant coatings, after years of exposure, some fading may still happen and affect the tiles’ appearance.

When investigating composite roofing tiles, it’s critical to comprehend their various varieties, technical characteristics, and advantages and disadvantages. Composite tiles combine strength and style, providing alternatives like artificial slate and shake that imitate real materials but are lighter and simpler to install. They are a dependable option for a variety of climates because of their exceptional resistance to weather and fire. But their longevity and low maintenance should be weighed against their cost and the possibility of color fading over time. To assist you in determining if composite tiles are the best option for your roofing needs, this article delves into these details.

What is a composite tile?

Thus, composite roofing is a quiet, attractive, and advantageous option. It combines the best properties of a polymer-quality coating with metal, particularly aluminum-cylic.

Stone granulates are shielded from all harmful elements and have their resistance to UV rays increased by the outer layer of acrylic varnish:

The difference from metal tiles: are they so similar?

You’ll want to know how unexpected this roofing material turned out. created him Louis Slate, whose last name bears no resemblance? He once strolled by the hangars, where sand was scattered on the metal roof.

The truth is that these hangars were invisible from the air during the war. Thus, the concept of sprinkling on roofing materials emerged, and over a number of decades, it expanded to include sizable factories across all continents.

A unique alloy of zinc and aluminum called alumocyzink, which was initially created in the early 1960s, serves as the foundation for composite tiles. It consists of silicon (1–6%), zinc (43%), and aluminum (55%). Alumocycink lengthens the roof service life of galvanized metal sheets by a minimum of three to six times! For this reason, a composite tile is more than just a metal tile with scattered design.

However, exercise caution: while some individual manufacturers claim to only produce composite tiles, in reality, they actually use regular steel sheets coated in zinc rather than aluminum. As a result, find out the sheet composition before purchasing.

Production process: what"s the secret?

In 1957, a composite metal tile was produced for the first time, and technological advancements continue to advance this process. By the way, the earliest examples of composite tiles can be found on some roofs; however, these coatings have a 50-year service life. The base layer’s and the basalt crumbs’ composition is kept a secret by contemporary manufacturers.

For instance, a well-known characteristic of composite tiles is their ability to reflect 75% of heat radiation. All things considered, the addition of silicon raises the alloy’s heat resistance to 315 °C.

Such a sheet is coated in a 200 micron thick acrylic base and protective layer in the factory. Following that, the surface is baked with stone crumbs, and a final 20-micron acrylic glaze is applied.

Everything is sent to the furnace, where the temperature gradually rises and then falls for at least an hour for each sheet. This makes the upper coating particularly robust.

The composite is modular, with stable sheet sizes of 1.25 by 0.4, in contrast to regular metal tiles. They used the composite to adopt the concept of a modular metal tile, which is very in style right now. What benefit do modular tiles offer? First of all, it is mounted on a scope, goes to standard European wafers, and is far easier to transport.

In addition, the metal-tightness of the basalt granules is adequate to prevent them from crumbling. Considering the whole volume of the roof, very little granulatory material is still present in gutters even after two to five years. Nothing can be said about the bitumen tile, which sprays even when the gunts are drawn over with a hand.

In case you are concerned, make sure to verify that genuine, premium tiles from a reliable supplier maintain their integrity even after bending and don’t crumble.

But consider this for a moment: if disassembly is required, it will be challenging to remove the composite tile from the rafter system because it is so firmly fixed on the roof. T.e. Roofs like this have been produced for centuries.

Today’s composite tiles frequently mimic the common traditional coatings, such as shale roofs, wooden rains, and ceramic tiles, but they are also less expensive and simpler to install.

Durability and warranty period

One of the premium class’s most resilient materials is composite tile. Frost resistance alone has no effect on the composite tile’s lifespan; rather, it only affects a shared guarantee. Additionally, a manufacturer may offer two products with entirely different guarantees; for example, one product may have a frost resistance certificate while the other may not, and using the latter is not advised in latitudes close to Russia. For such a tile, the actual life is much longer, and the warranty typically lasts up to 50 years.

One of the most stylish and attractive roofing materials is composite tile. He quickly becomes well-liked in Russia since, although having fewer disadvantages than natural tiles, it is not prone to moss growth, chipping, scratching, or beating.

In addition, it offers these significant benefits:

  • Thanks to easy weight, it is suitable for the roof of most types of buildings and does not require an expensive rafter system.
  • It is resistant to environmental effects, tolerates hail well and has a large expiration date.
  • Convenient for installation, because it is produced by separate small elements with optimal size. Easily translated and does not almost leave waste.
  • Noise isolated. What is even paradoxical, because the composite roof is a metal, but a special coating of basalt crumbs creates the desired soundproofing.
  • Repairind. Modern manufacturers supply a special repair complex along with the roof, which is always convenient to get and apply. Literally 10-20 minutes-and the right part of the roof is completely restored.

Let’s examine the repair complex in greater detail. Usually, this is a closed container filled with stone granules and painted with glue. Chips and scratches are removed sufficiently quickly that they will probably reappear during installation. Roofing nail caps conceal the same set.

This is how contemporary composite tiles appear, using one of the well-known brands as an example:

An additional brief video review from a different manufacturer:

Naturally, the cost and eventual restoration of such a coating are drawbacks. The truth is that dirt sticks to such a surface quite firmly, so simply purifying it with water under pressure won’t work and might even be harmful.

A bucket of water, patience, and a specific soft brush are required, or you can hire a specialized company to do the work for you. This is why some people who oppose composite tiles refer to them as "vacuumbers."

As you can see, there are far more benefits than drawbacks to composite tiles. The following are the findings of a recent survey conducted among homeowners who have this type of roof:

Types and forms of composite tiles

Contemporary composite tiles from various manufacturers essentially share the same composition and even forms. Because the base is a metal sheet with the same overlap and even dimensions in a single wave, the geometry is obvious to all.

Composite roofing comes in a small number of design styles, but they are the most successful and useful. Listed below are the most well-liked ones:

Let’s go over each of them as the profile’s appearance has both practical and aesthetic significance:

  • Profile under No. 1. This is one of the most unusual profiles for tiles, which was once specially designed by AHI ROofing. Looks elegant, stylish, and is also considered the most durable profile among others! The whole secret in additional stiffener ribs.
  • Profile No. 2 – This is a popular Decra profile and its derivatives. In addition to its delicate, sophisticated, almost historical appearance, this type of composite tile also perfectly takes water from the roof and has improved strength than a regular wave.
  • Profile No. 3. This profile really resembles a soft roof. Back at the beginning of the twentieth century, such roofs were built from separate clay or cedar records that were overlapping. Therefore, this type of composite tile was developed – as simple and pronounced, for special projects.
  • Profile No. 4. This is the most beautiful profile, according to modern designers. He is not the most durable of all, but perfectly imitates the Italian classic roofs and really looks great on the roof of any house.
  • Profile No. 5. This type of profile is trying to emphasize the centuries -old roofing traditions. Take a look at this drawing – it imitates the texture of a wooden roof. Therefore, such a profile is often decorated with architectural objects and rich private buildings.

If you live in an area with typical weather, meaning there aren’t any unusually strong winds or snowfall, and you don’t need to select a profile with greater strength, go with the profile type that you find most appealing and that will work well for your home’s project.

It is crucial to be able to concentrate on the composite tile market.To. In addition to manufacturing technologies, various factories also have internal product testing processes.

For instance, as is customary in their nation, German manufacturers put their produced tiles through 150 cycles before offering a guarantee of only 30 years. In Russia, this was extended to 50 years.

Now let’s examine some offers from well-known manufacturers. What makes each product stand out?

Metrotile: natural basalt sprinkle

Let’s begin with Metrotile, the most well-known, priciest, and original composite tile brand available in the Russian market. Because it is composed of exceptionally flexible Luxembourg steel, this Belgian tile can be used on roofs with nearly any surface:

This is how the Metrotile roof sheet is made:

  1. From above – a transparent acrylic glaze that helps cleanse the roof from dust during the rain.
  2. Next is the granulate of natural stone – basalt.
  3. The next layer is acrylic, which fixes natural sprinkling.
  4. The sheet is based on Alucinc, 190 UAH/m 2, with metal thickness 0.45.
  5. The penultimate is an acrylic primer, as an additional anti -corrosion protection for a metal sheet.
  6. And in the heart – alumocylic, steel of 9 mm thick. It is produced by Luxembourg, a special brand that is known due to its excellent flexibility and extensibility for metrotala.

Additionally, Metrotile delights its customers with an intriguing installation technique: skilled roofers score ten nails and then apply a drop of vulcanizing paint from a special tube to each one, waiting ten minutes to complete the task. This process takes no more than five to ten minutes. As a result, the hat blends in with the surrounding sprinkle and vanishes into the coating itself. It is not possible to tear it off or find her later.

This is a really fascinating video that shows you the layers that make up Metrotile tiles and how they are made:

Roser: Smart Technologies and Production Secrets

Roser’s South Korean tiles are a mystery to other producers due to their patented and strictly confidential manufacturing processes. However, Roser’s through-hole-free fasteners are particularly well-liked by customers.

Roser metal thickness is 0.45. Here, a rubber washer and a screw are used, which seems more dependable than just nails. However, some opponents of this method think that all of this will start to flow after 5–10 years, if we take experience with regular metal tiles.

Gorard: New Zealand materials

Although manufacturing is based in America and Europe, Gorard, a New Zealand company AHI ROofing, produces another excellent tile. Girard uses a natural-colored crushed stone that is mined in the New Zealand mountains for his basalt sporoning. This color changes with time, taking on beautiful new hues.

Girard established a plant in Hungary to produce goods for the European market, although profiled sheets and crumbs are still imported from New Zealand. Alucinc sheet covering, 150 g/m 2, 0.45 thickness.

Girard provides special nails covered in acrylic glaze for product installation. Furthermore, the manufacturer claims that this acrylic coating "sins" with ordinary acrylic because it warms up slightly when mechanically exposed to a nail.

It turns out that the nail hole heals itself, hermetically shuts, and stops leaks. Furthermore, we developed a unique mount today that fits into a pneumatic pistol and makes tile installation go very quickly.

Decra from ICOPAL: Finnish quality

Additionally excellent are the composite tiles offered by Decra, a business led by IKOPAL:

Since Decra composite tiles have been in use for almost 50 years—since 1973—practice rather than just lab testing has verified their quality. What makes the difference?

The truth is that a fresh, recently released example is encountered despite hundreds of cycles of defrosting-carbon or winds, temperature changes in the factory. Furthermore, nothing new is exposed on the actual roof by these cycles—only the natural ones—but rather the passage of time, the sun, and sporadic painful realities. Decra is currently leading the European roofing material market because of this.

The core component of Decra is an epoxy-and-alumocylic composite that has a high adhesion level. An extra layer made of bulk acrylic that has more mechanical strength. The latter is to be covered with a mixture of natural stone and UV-resistant acrylic varnish. Additionally, the varied composition of this layer raises the noise absorption coefficient.

Decra design is consistently one-wave and imitative of natural, elite, and ceramic tile. Additionally, the installation is unique in that it is beneath the wave’s lower end, preventing leaks where self-tapping screws are used.

Kami Terra Plegel: Swedish quality

When making your selection, take note of Kami Terra Plegel’s Swedish tile. The company has been in business since 1976 and is deservedly regarded as the Swedish leader in the release of metal roofing materials into the Russian market since 1996.

This type of tile is made of steel that is between 0.5 and 0.9 mm thick and has a 275 g/m 2 layer of zinc applied to both sides. Such a roof can tolerate temperature variations from -40 °C to +120 °C, physical exertion up to 300 kg, and windmilling up to 250 km/h/h because of its thick layer of zinc coating. Unpleasantly, though, this manufacturer is the one who makes composite tiles devoid of aluminum.

Luxard from Technonikol: New items on the market

But you have undoubtedly heard of the Russian company Technonikol. She produces a rather good composite tile under the Luxurd brand:

These tiles have an alumocycle coating and a metal thickness of 0.5 mm (as opposed to 0.45 mm, as many other manufacturers do). The price is the only downside, as many people anticipate more lenient pricing policies from domestic roofs.

There are several different varieties of composite tiles on the market today, providing a flexible roofing option. Usually, a blend of materials including asphalt, recycled plastics, and fiberglass are used to create these tiles. Although the composition and manufacturing process of each type varies, they all generally have similar benefits.

The longevity of composite tiles is one of their main advantages. They are made to resist inclement weather, such as strong winds, intense rain, or snowfall, as well as UV rays. Long-term cost-effectiveness is another benefit of composite tiles: they are durable and frequently come with lengthy warranties.

Furthermore, composite tiles are less heavy than more conventional roofing materials like concrete or slate tiles. This feature lessens the building’s structural load while also making installation simpler. It can be especially helpful for older buildings or those with certain weight restrictions.

Composite tiles do have certain disadvantages, though. Even though they are strong, they might not last as long as more expensive roofing materials like clay or metal tiles. Although they can be damaged by impact or falling branches, repairs are usually simpler and less expensive than with other materials.

To sum up, composite tiles are an attractive choice for both residential and commercial roofing projects. Their combination of affordability, durability, and aesthetic versatility makes them a well-liked option for both contractors and homeowners. By being aware of the particular kind of composite tile and its technical attributes, you can make sure you select the best roofing option for your requirements.

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Denis Shcherbakov

Professional roofer with 20 years of experience. I know everything about the installation, repair and maintenance of various types of roofs. I will be happy to share my knowledge and experience with you.

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