Reduce Costs with Lightweight Roof Tiles
As those of us who work in the construction industry are well aware, working at height is a risky business and falls from a height are still one of the major causes of death and serious injury in the workplace. Despite our stringent health and safety legislation here in the UK, working at height still involves risks so finding methods of either eliminating the need to work at height or make such work as safe as possible is vital if we want to carry on seeing a decrease in the death and injury figures in the annual health and safety statistics.
Today we’re taking a look at innovative new building materials that remove some of the risk of working at height in the roofing industry. Traditional roof tiles have usually been manufactured with locally available materials – terracotta or slate and sometimes concrete, all of which are heavy. The tiles are laid in regular, overlapping roles to provide buildings with a waterproof roof that keeps out the rain. However, the combined weight of the tiles means that walls have to be strong enough to support the roof.
The weight of roofing tiles also brings other drawback – namely safety issues because stacks of heavy tiles will need to be lifted into place so that they can be installed. This means lifting a heavy weight up to a height which makes the weight dangerous to those below. Nowadays this is a job that is usually performed by a mechanical hoist or conveyor belt and stacks of tiles have to be spread around the roof area so there’s not too much weight in one spot. In days gone by, bundles of roof tiles would have had to be manually lifted and carried up a ladder – a dangerous, repetitive and arduous task.
Nowadays there is a wide range of lightweight roof tiles available that have been developed as an alternative, eco-friendly lightweight solution to the heavy roof tiles of the past. These lightweight tiles come in a range of materials, styles and colours and represent a huge step forward for those who work in the roofing and tiling industry. Just take a look at some of the benefits that lightweight roof tiles can bring to the construction industry and to building owners:
Reduction in transport costs – it’s obvious that the heavier the load, the more fuel it will cost to transport it, the more wear and tear occurs on vehicles which leads to increased vehicle maintenance costs and shorter vehicle lifespan. There will also be a knock on effect on road maintenance – the more heavy vehicles there are on a road system, carrying heavy loads will lead to added costs on highway maintenance.
Alternative construction methods can be used which means that the roof and tiles can be assembled at floor level and the roof hoisted into place. Scaffolding costs and health and safety risks will be greatly reduced, leading to an overall reduction in the cost of construction.
Foundations on buildings can be shallower – again leading to a reduction in costs.
Lighter tiles are usually cheaper to manufacture and use fewer resources. This leads to an increase in sustainability, one of the watchwords of the modern age that spans all industries.