7 tips for choosing ondulin for roofing

7 min

The usual roofing materials are being replaced by their more modern counterparts. Not so long ago, appeared on the domestic construction market ondulin, which is often called euro-slate. He immediately won over with a low price, presentable appearance, record moisture resistance and other positive qualities. The popularity of the material has grown so much that they even began to fake it. Let’s stop our attention on how to choose the right ondulin for the roof so that it is of proper quality and fully corresponds to future operating conditions.

# 1. How is ondulin produced?

ondulinCorrugated bituminous sheets, now called ondulin, were produced and patented by the French company Onduline, whose name later gave the name to the material. The first production facilities for its manufacture started working near Paris back in 1944. In the 60s, the company already had several factories, and the new roofing material began to be widely used in European countries. Ondulin came to Russia only in 1994, and since then the material has been in ever-growing demand.

ondulin 2For the production of ondulin, cellulose fiber is used, which is strongly crushed together with mineral components and rolled into sheets of a given shape. Further, in several stages, impregnation with purified bitumen takes place, which ensures high waterproofing properties of the material. At this stage, the material is also impregnated with mineral additives and hardening resins. Painting can be done on one or both sides. The color palette is wide, the surface can be matte or glossy, depending on the composition used: acrylic paint is used to obtain a matte surface, a glossy surface is obtained by adding silicone.

After completion of all processing processes, the material is cut into sheets of the required size. As a rule, an ondulin sheet has 10 waves, the height of which is 36 mm. Sheet size – 2000 * 950 mm, wave pitch 95 mm, sheet thickness 3 mm.

# 2. Advantages and disadvantages of ondulin

The method of production and the materials used made it possible to achieve excellent performance. Among the main advantages of ondulin it is worth highlighting:

  • ondulin 3water resistance. By this parameter, ondulin surpasses all other roofing materials. Waterproofing properties are provided by impregnation with special compounds. Moreover, when heated by the sun’s rays, cellulose fibers bind to each other, further increasing the moisture resistance of the material;

  • environmental friendliness and hygiene;

  • a light weight. An ondulin sheet of standard dimensions weighs only 6.5 kg, which is almost 4 times less than a slate of a similar area, which means easier transportation and installation of the material;

  • ease of processing. You can use a wood saw to cut the sheets;

  • ondulin 4flexibility. It is easy to give the material the most bizarre shape, so it can be used for arranging roofs of complex shapes;

  • low cost. Ondulin, of course, is slightly more expensive than ordinary slate, but much cheaper than other roofing materials, incl. and metal tiles;

  • soundproofing qualities. The material allows you to do without additional sound insulation, since falling rain drops and gusts of wind will not be heard in the room;

  • ondulin is not subject to corrosion, corrosive environments, does not rot or mold.

Despite the huge number of advantages, the scope of use of ondulin is limited due to some of its disadvantages:

  • ondulin 4low strength. It is this minus that is often noted by those who performed the installation of ondulin in violation of the rules. The material is flexible and lightweight, so errors in the arrangement of the rafter system and the fastening of the material may result in the roof not being able to withstand a heavy snowfall. The solution is simple – to fully comply with the installation rules, and the strength of the roof will be at its best. One sheet of ondulin must be fastened with at least 20 nails, the pitch of the lathing is not less than 0.6 m.Nevertheless, in the summer heat it is better not to walk on the roof of ondulin, as bitumen softens greatly. In addition, in the heat, the material can give off an unpleasant odor;

  • flammability. Ondulin is subject to combustion, ignites at temperatures above 2500C;

  • discoloration. Under the influence of sunlight, the color of the coating will gradually fade, which is typical even for high-quality material.

As for the durability, it is average. Subject to all the nuances of installation and operation, ondulin will last 15-20 years.

No. 3. Ondulin slate and ondulin roof tiles

ondulin 5Ondulin appeared as an analogue of slate, but later sheets of reduced size began to be produced, which were called ondulin tiles. Onduline slate has the dimensions described above: 200 * 95 cm, thickness 3 mm and weight 6.5 kg. It is used for arranging roofs of a simple shape. Please note that if the number of waves on the sheet is not 10, but 9, and the material itself is thinner than necessary, then we are talking about non-original and low-quality products.

Ondulin tiles have parameters 1 * 0.35 m. These are flexible tiles that can be used to equip complex roofs, and there will be less waste when using such material. The main difference lies in the use in the production of fiberglass.

No. 4. The main types of ondulin

The demand for the material has led to the emergence of new varieties. At the moment, ondulin is produced in the following types:

  • classical. Used on flat and vaulted roofs, measures 200 * 95 cm, thickness 3 mm;

  • ondulin smart. A more modern and perfect coating, which differs from the classic one in smaller parameters and weight, applied by attachment points and the presence of a hydro-barrier lock. Parameters sheets 195 * 95 cm, thickness 3 mm, number of waves – 10, weight 6.3 kg. Thanks to the Smart Lock, melt water and slanting rain will not fall into the overlapping areas of the sheets. Installation of such material is simplified due to the applied markings of the fasteners. Such ondulin can be used for roofing public and residential buildings;
    ondulin smart

  • ondulin DiY has all the properties and advantages of a conventional ondulin, but at the same time has a smaller size, which greatly simplifies its installation. Sheet dimensions 200 * 75 cm, thickness 3 mm, weight 5.2 kg, number of waves – 8. Due to the reduced width of the sheets, the number of overlaps increases, which makes the roof more durable. Such sheets are widespread in areas with difficult climatic conditions;
    ondulin DiY

  • Ondulin compact is used for arranging small or complex roofs; ease of transportation and installation is due to its reduced size. A sheet with parameters 100 * 75 cm has a thickness of 2.6 mm, a weight of 2.5 kg, the number of waves – 8. Due to the large number of overlaps, a high strength of the roof is ensured, even with a smaller material thickness. The material is used mainly for arranging the roofs of small buildings, incl. garages, sheds.

Although the number of waves on different types of ondulin is different, their size is the same, so the material of different types can be combined. This is an additional advantage of ondulin, which applies to roofs of complex shapes.

№5. Ondulin analogues

On the market, you can find materials very similar to ondulin, with similar properties, but produced using slightly different technologies. The main analogues of ondulin are as follows:

  • Ondura and Ondalux are products of the French company Onduline. The material has a thickness of 2.6 mm, a wave height of 34 mm and a weight of 6 kg;

  • Nulin is a material developed by the American company Nuline Corporation, which, by the way, has been taken over by Onduline since 2010. In terms of characteristics and quality, nulin resembles ondulin, but has slightly different sizes. The weight of one 10-wave sheet with dimensions 200 * 122 cm is 10 kg, and an 8-wave sheet with dimensions 200 * 102 cm weighs 6.8 kg. The material is more durable and durable, therefore the warranty for it is higher – 25 years;

  • onduvilla differs from ondulin in profile and size. Its dimensions are 106 * 40 cm, sheet thickness is 3 mm, weight is 1.2 kg. The special profile and painting method creates a 3D effect. According to a number of parameters, onduvilla refers to soft tiles.

No. 6. What to consider when buying ondulin?

When it is decided that ondulin is ideal for the roof of a particular building, it is important to choose a quality material that will fully meet all the expectations placed on it. When buying, pay attention to the following points:

  • the dimensions of the sheet must correspond to the declared type of ondulin, all sheets must be the same among themselves;
  • the number of waves on standard sheets is always 10, on compact sheets – 8, and on fake sheets it can be 9;
  • it does not hurt to selectively compare several sheets so that they are exactly the same shade;
  • the presence of bituminous spots on the sheets is undesirable;
  • do not hesitate to look at the quality certificates and study the warranty conditions;
  • it is better to make a purchase from reliable sellers and authorized dealers of major manufacturers. It is better to refuse a product at a too low price.
    ondulin 6

№7. Ondulin production

The main manufacturer of ondulin is the French company Onduline SA. Actually, this is the company where this roof covering was developed and patented. Production has expanded so much that factories are located today in many European countries, as well as in Brazil, the USA, Malaysia. In 2008, a branch was opened in Nizhny Novgorod, and in 2012 a second line was launched. This is the only ondulin production facility in Russia. Onduline SA occupies 75% of the European market for corrugated cellulose-bitumen roofing materials.
Onduline SA

Wavy cellulose-bitumen sheets similar to ondulin are produced by some other European companies, including the Belgian company Aqualine, the German company Bituwell, the Turkish Corrubit and the American Nuline.

In conclusion

Due to its low cost and good performance, ondulin is now used both to cover the roofs of outbuildings and in the construction of houses. The correct choice of ondulin and installation that meets all the rules is the key to the long service life of this roofing material.

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Passionate about DIY for over 10 years and all the new tools, I give you through this blog all my advice, tips, tests in all areas: carpentry, electricity, masonry, gardening, home automation ...


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