Best Underlayment For Tile Roofs in Florida

by | Apr 16, 2021 | Tile Roofing

Tile roofs are the most resilient roofing systems in Florida and can last for more than 100 years with proper installation and maintenance. But for you to enjoy the full life expectancy of your tile roof, the underlayment, which is the foundation for your roofing, needs to solid. An underlayment for use under tiles needs to be rugged enough to support the weight of stacks of tiles. At AWS Roofing, we use an extremely strong underlayment to protect your home from the elements and ensure your tile roof lasts for a lifetime. 

What Is Tile Roof Underlayment?

Underlayment is a membrane applied directly to the tile roof deck between the tile and the roof sheathing that acts as an extra layer protecting your roof from water, should severe weather damage your tile roof. 

While a tile roof by its very nature is water-repellent, it is not a watertight barrier because it isn’t sealed at all corners when laid. That’s why it needs a roofing underlayment to serve as an additional water barrier. 

Best Underlayment for Tile Roof

Ideally, the underlayment quality should be superior to or at least of equal quality with the tiles to ensure durability and extend the life of your tile roof. Tile roof underlayment has three categories: asphalt-saturated felt, synthetic underlayment (non-bitumen), and rubberized asphalt, synthetic underlayment. Below is a breakdown of the three types. 

1. Asphalt-Saturated Felt

One of the most common types of underlayment used in tile roof applications is asphalt-saturated felt paper because it’s a low-cost material and is easy to install. It’s a blend of cellulose, asphalt, polyester, and bitumen soaked in a waterproofing agent. It’s available in two thicknesses: 15-pound and 30-pound, but the 30-pound felt paper is a popular option for many roofers.

That’s because it’s much thicker and stiffer than the 15-pound felt, more resistant to damage during installation, and can protect the roof longer if exposed to outside elements like snow, wind, rain, and hail. Asphalt-saturated felt water-resistant because it’s saturated with asphalt and a cost-effective option for many homeowners.

2. Non-Bitumen Synthetic Underlayment 

Woven from polypropylene or polyethylene material, non-bitumen synthetic underlayment boasts several incredible features that make it the ideal underlayment for your tile roof. This type of underlayment was made to be a replacement for felt. Synthetic underlayment is water-resistant because its basement has a high asphalt saturation, and thanks to the fiberglass addition, it also has superior stability and heat resistance. High-quality synthetic underlayment has the added benefit of scrim reinforcement for additional slip resistance, even when wet. This underlayment is designed for application across the entire roof deck.

Other benefits of synthetic underlayment include:

  • Thinner and lighter than most underlayments which adds less weight to the roof
  • Easy to install 
  • Much more tear-resistant when exposed to high winds and foot traffic
  • Wrinkle-free and resistant to fungal growth
  • It degrades more slowly and lasts longer than most materials
  • Highly resistant to UV damage and can be left exposed to the weather for periods from six months to a year, depending on the manufacturer’s recommendations 
  • Synthetic underlayment and is sometimes used with waterproof products

3. Rubberized Asphalt Underlayment 

This underlayment is more expensive than the other two options but may offer better waterproofing benefits. Why? Rubberized underlayment contains higher percentages of rubber polymers and asphalt, making it waterproof. They usually have adhesive on one side, protected by a membrane that is peeled during installation. This special backing makes rubberized underlayment self-adhering and creates the waterproof seal between a clean roof deck and the underlayment.

The rubber-like qualities of these underlayments allow them to seal well around fasteners, such as nails or staples. Some rubberized underlayments are designed to resist heat up to 250° F without degradation of the adhesive, making them ideal for your Florida home. Other perks of using a rubberized underlayment include:

  • They are non-skid and weather-resistance thanks to the polyester or polyethylene bonded to the upper surface
  • They have a polymer film bonded to the weather surface for improved moisture resistance
  • Fiber-glass reinforced

Call The Professionals

If you live in Florida, you know how extreme the weather here can get. With that in mind, you need underlayment made of materials that can resist stand up to the elements without getting damaged. You also need a quailed, licensed, and experienced roofer to install the underlayment. The pros at AWS Roofing will help you pick the best underlayment for your tile roof and install it with accuracy and expertise. Contact Us Today for a Free Estimate!

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875 W. Park Ave
Edgewater, FL 32132


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