What are the differences between tiles and slates?

Make an informed decision about the best material for your roof by finding out more about the differences between tiles and slates.

Your roof is your first line of defence against the elements, protecting you and your property’s structure from damp and damage.

When choosing the right material for your roof, there are many different factors to take into consideration including quality, aesthetics and price.

Understanding the differences between slate and manufactured roof tiles can help you to make the right choice.


Slate is a naturally occurring material, whereas tiles are manufactured and usually made from concrete or clay.


Slate is usually grey in colour but can be found in a variety of shades and colours. Tiles can be manufactured in a range of colours and styles to suit your home’s appearance.


Because slate is made from a natural material, there is likely to be some slight variation in texture and colour from one slate to another. Manufactured tiles will be identical and consistent in shape.


Slate has excellent durability and longevity. With the right maintenance, slate can last anything from 125 years to 200 years before it needs replacing. On average, roof tiles last between 50 and 100 years depending on whether you choose concrete or clay tiles, clay tiles tend to last longer than concrete ones.


Due to its unequalled longevity and durability, slate tends to be more expensive to purchase and install than manufactured roof tiles. Concrete or clay tiles are usually a much more affordable option.

Environmental impact

Slate is a very environmentally friendly option as it is a naturally occurring material that requires very little manufacturing and can be recycled if it outlasts the building that it is installed on. Whilst clay and concrete tiles are both reusable, and clay is a natural substance, they both create large quantities of CO2 during the manufacturing process.

Here at All Slates we stock both reclaimed slate and reclaimed roof tiles, find out more about our products online, or give our team a call on 01829 262 600.

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