Many people looking for a new roof are attracted to the appearance of natural slate. Unfortunately, natural slate tiles come with several drawbacks; instead, you might want to look at fibre cement roofing tiles. Fibre cement is a composite material made from cellulose fibres, cement, sand, water and a small amount of other chemical additives. Made into roofing tiles, fibre cement nicely replicates the appearance of natural slate, but it comes with several compelling advantages.
Here are just four reasons to choose fibre cement over slate for your roof.
1. Low Cost
Whether redoing a roof or putting one on a new house, roofing costs can add up very quickly, so anyone lacking bottomless pockets will probably be eager to cut those costs down. Unfortunately, natural slate is fairly expensive; after all, it needs to be quarried, cut to shape and then transported to your location, and it's a sought-after material. By switching to a manmade alternative like fibre cement, you can drastically reduce the cost of your new roof.
2. Quick and Easy Installation
You'll probably be hiring people to fit your roof instead of doing the work yourself, but you still need to think about installation difficulty and timeframes. You want the job done as quickly as possible, especially since any unforeseen bad weather can put things well behind. Luckily enough, fibre cement goes up quickly and easily since it arrives with pre-drilled holes and can be laid out in a single layer. Natural slate must be set down in two layers and doesn't come with pre-drilled holes, so installation takes much longer.
3. Uniform Appearance
You might have read that natural slate looks better than fibre cement. The truth is that it looks more natural, and that's not always a good thing. Natural materials have natural imperfections. In contrast, a man-made material like fibre cement can be made to one consistent size, colour and shape to create a uniform finish. Unless you're dealing with a very old property, the uniform look of fibre cement should be a better match for your home than natural slate.
One of the first things people notice when they handle fibre cement is how light it is, especially compared against natural slate. Using a lighter roofing material makes a lot of sense since they put less stress on the underlying structure. Use a heavier material, and you might actually need to add in structural support to hold the weight.