Your Ultimate Guide to Different Australian Roof Types


Australia features a diversity of climatic zones ranging from the hot and humid to cooler and dryer zones. With such a variety in topography and climatic zones, it is necessary to give some serious thought to the kind of materials that you will use for your roofing.

No matter your location, you will need a professional roofing material that will be able to withstand the local weather conditions while offering you sufficient protection and comfort at the same time.

There are other factors that you can keep mind when choosing a suitable roofing material for your premises. These include the architectural design of the building, the cost and availability of the roofing materials and the purpose of the building. In terms of architectural styles, there are certain roofing materials that are better suited for curved roofs such as steel while some rigid materials such as tiling are better for creating more solid lines.

When choosing a roof type for your Australian home, you should put the following factors into consideration:-

  • The style of the building
  • Your energy efficiency requirements/expectations
  • Residential community requirements or covenants
  • Council requirements
  • National and state building codes for particular kinds of buildings
  • Aesthetic considerations

The main and most common roof types in Australia include:

  • Metal Roofing
  • Terracotta tile roofs
  • Concrete tiles
  • Colorbond

Metal Roofing

Metal RoofMetal roofs are the most popular roofing type in Australia. They offer numerous advantages such as low cost, durability and thermal efficiency. Most modern homes in Australia currently use the various kinds of metal roofing available. Improvement in moulding technique also means that you can get quality metal roofing with great aesthetic detail.

Metal roofing is also environmentally-friendly as the roofing materials are moulded from recycled metal. They, therefore, contribute to environmental sustainability. The main drawback with the use of metal roofing is the rust although improvements in manufacturing technology are increasing producing metal roofing materials that are largely rust-proof. Also, they do not have good energy efficiency.

The main types of metal roofing materials include the following:-

Zinc Plated Steel: These are commonly known as galvanized steel and have been popular in the building industry since the 70s. However, they been gradually replaced by other types of steel and roofing types. Today it is very rare to find new buildings in Australia being constructed with galvanized steel. Most contractors will also dissuade you from using galvanized steel in your buildings.

Zincalume Steel: Zincalume is an alloy of zinc and aluminum materials and offers an improvement over the galvanized steel. It’s mostly of superior quality due to its anti-corrosion property so it is going to last much longer than zinc plated steel. However, this material is likely to heat up a lot in hotter weather so it is generally advisable to use it in homes with a high ceiling.

Sea Side Grate Steel: The corrosive effects of the sea on steel roofing are well known. The sea side grate steel is designed for homes that are situated closer to the sea. It is recommended for homes that are built within 300m of the sea.

Terracotta Tile Roofs

premier restoration service for terracotta roofsTerracotta tile roofing has been used since time immemorial. The material is made from natural clay. Over the years, improvements in manufacturing have led to better quality terracotta roofing materials. The terracotta tiles are quite popular in Australia. The main drawback is that they are generally a costlier roofing option.

Based on the terracotta profile that you use for your roofing, the terracotta roof tiles can improve the aesthetics of your building and they are also a very durable roofing material. The materials are also available in a vast array of colours so they likely suit all preferences.

The terracotta roof tiles are highly energy efficient. They have a natural density that helps in leveling the outside temperature fluctuations. They will absorb heat in the day and release some of this heat at night thus ensuring a fairly stable room temperature and this can significantly lower heating and cooling costs.

Concrete Roof Tiles

These are another roof tiling option in Australia. Concrete roof tiles are highly durable and will last decades. Concrete roof tiles can give you the same profile as terracotta roof tiles but the main advantage is that they are generally very affordable. If you are looking for terracotta profile on your roofing but don’t have the budget to install terracotta roofing, it is advisable to go with the concrete roof tiles.

Concrete is a very versatile roofing option. You can mould it to recreate other roofing materials and diverse styles. Like terracotta roof tiles, they are also very good in temperature regulation hence ensuring a more energy efficient home. Homes with energy efficiency have excellent thermal comfort which eliminates the need to use artificial heating and cooling systems. They will significantly cut down on your power bills. The main drawback with the concrete tiles is that they are quite porous. Also, unlike terracotta tiles, they are not lustrous and might not bring out the right look that you are after. Unlike terracotta tiles, concrete tiles will also fade a lot quicker.

Colorbond Roofing

Colorbond roofing is actually a type of steel roofing which is coated with a painted polyester material. Colorbond roofing generally goes well with contemporary houses and is a generally a good roofing choice for homes that are situated close to the beach or for regional houses.

There are various types of colorbond roofs that you can install on your premises. They come in a variety of grades which can differ in pricing. Colorbond is currently the most popular metal roofing material for most Australian homes. The colorbond material is made from an alloy of zinc and aluminium and a polymer protective material is added on the surface for durability. That is why these types of roofs are some of the most durable in Australia and will last for more than a 100 years when maintained properly. Colorbond roofing materials are very light in weight and unlike other metal roof types, are very energy efficient.

That raps up our mini-guide of the main roofing types used in Australia. If you are unsure of the right type of roofing to use for your premises, you can contact a professional roofing expert to advise you accordingly on which of these roofing types will be most suitable for your needs.

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