A sustainable solution – Thatch Roofing Material

beach house built thatch roofing materials Unless your living in a cave you can’t get much more “natural” than thatch roofing. Thatch roofing is used in every continent in the world besides Antarctica.

What is thatch roofing? Thatch roofing is essentially any vegetation that is applied to a roof. The most basic thatch roofing is essentially gathering tree limbs, brush, leaves, etc… and making them into bundles to apply to a structure as the roof. By far the most common material used for thatch is reed and straw.

Modern thatch roofing is almost always reed. Reed is dried before applying to the roof in “bundles”. Thatch roofs are generally applied directly to rafters with possible 1x decking. It is important to have adequate airflow on a thatch roof.

Thatch roof are applied using hooks and screws. You start at the bottom and overlay working up.

What about fire? This is perhaps the highest concern with a thatch roof. We have yet to see a thatch roof pass Class A fire ratings as shingles do. However, it is worth noting that thatch roofing materials  have been installed for literally thousands of year and still to this day. Some cultures use thatch roofing and actually have fires inside the building. Because of the densely woven nature of thatch roofing the likely hood of fire is reduced.  Additionally synthetic thatch roofing has been designed to reduce fire possibilities and this synthetic product actually DOES PASS Class A Fire ratings.

Video Of Endureed Simple Fire Test

bundles of thatch roofing material

Cost? You may think thatch roofing should be very inexpensive. Well yes and no. If you want to go to the woods of go harvest some cane or straw then the raw materials for thatch roofing can be very inexpensive oftentimes free. Now hiring a thatch roof to be installed on you house is a different story. A thatch roofer is a VERY RARE breed. With so few companies specializing in thatch roofing a professionally installed thatch roof can be many times more than traditional shingle. Don’t forget about upkeep. Depending on your climate and landscaping conditions thatch roofing can require constant maintenance. While others can install a thatch roof and not worry for decades.


Thatch roofing installation VIDEO.