The Advantages of Terracotta Cladding Systems

Terracotta Natural Cladding

Terracotta cladding is a centuries-old building material with an enduring popularity. Formed from the earth, it is the ultimate natural material, made from high-quality clay extracted from the ground, refined and mixed, and then moulded or extruded into bricks or tiles. Using careful, temperature-controlled processes and oxidising to create its beloved earthy colour, terracotta cladding is then dyed and kiln fired for several days at 1000C to create the final tile.

 Terracotta cladding systems are popular for a variety of reasons – from their natural form and appearance and their endless aesthetic options and combinations to their energy efficiency and long-term durability. Designers and builders seeking to incorporate attractive, customisable and durable natural materials into their projects find the many benefits of terracotta cladding that make it highly suitable for meeting their design briefs.


The Versatile Use Cases of Terracotta Cladding Systems

Terracotta cladding is well-known for its natural aesthetic, as well as its durability – but its versatility makes it popular for a much wider range of applications.

A Premium Product for Architectural Rainscreen

One of the most common ways to install terracotta cladding is via a rainscreen system. Terracotta rainscreen systems are installed on an aluminium support system, creating an external barrier designed to drain water away from the cavity between the cladding and the rest of the building, and promote airflow, for a more energy-efficient building. Because of their durability and ability to slot easily into a support system, terracotta cladding makes an effective and efficient rainscreen suitable for a wide variety of large-scale projects.

Contemporary Design

While terracotta cladding is best-known for its earthy appearance, its ability for customisation makes it a top contemporary design choice for builders and architects. As the modern world becomes more disconnected from nature and urban or multi-residential dwellings are on the rise, contemporary architecture leans towards biophilic design – designs that evoke a connection with nature. Directly translating from the Latin word ‘baked earth’, terracotta is a material that inspires the human connection with nature and adds an earthy quality to an urban design. The versatility of terracotta, and its ability to be coloured with a multitude of different glazes also allows designers to blend natural materials with a modern aesthetic, combining its earthy texture with bold, vibrant hues.


Key Advantages of Terracotta Cladding Systems

Unmatched Durability and Strength

An exceptionally strong and durable material, terracotta can withstand high-impact areas, as well as extreme levels of UV and harsh weather conditions such as wind, rain and salt spray. This makes it ideal for outdoor use in external façades, as well as for indoor use. For example, large public buildings which are subject to high levels of traffic, such as the Australian National Archives, benefit from the durability of a terracotta façade.

National Archives of Australia_30_Vicars_St_Mitchell ACT_039-1

While other cladding materials such as fibre cement are popular options for similar applications, terracotta cladding systems stand out for their exceptional hardwearing characteristics.

 Given it is manufactured from fired clay, it is therefore completely non-combustible - terracotta is a fireproof option safe for all constructions, even high rise buildings where non-combustible materials are required. It requires no long-term maintenance such as repainting or resealing, and requires no sealants or grouts, so the joints between panels or tiles will not require maintenance over time.

 A thoroughly tested, high quality cladding option, Clayton is the appealing terracotta cladding system from leading cladding supplier Fairview. A complete range of natural tiles and panels made from high-durability kiln-fired clay, Clayton façades guarantee a long-lasting façade, which can withstand not only the elements, but the potential damages which may occur in a busy urban environment. 


Energy Efficiency and Environmental Friendliness

As sustainability comes to the forefront of building design, terracotta cladding steps up as a highly environmentally sustainable option – as it is not only a natural material, but one which contributes to and benefits the overall sustainability of the building it clads.

Clayton terracotta natural cladding

Because of its rainscreen system, the insulating properties of the material itself and also the porous nature of the clay, terracotta has excellent thermal insulation properties. When used in a rainscreen façade and regulating airflow, as well as the temperature of the cladding itself, it can control the temperature inside the building and reduce its overall energy consumption.

Made from natural clay, terracotta is also a highly environmentally friendly material – formed from the earth and fired to withstand the test of time, terracotta reduces resource and energy consumption, ideal for the eco-conscious builders and designers.

Fairview’s Clayton has been tested and certified for its energy efficiency and environmental friendliness. Natural, durable and energy efficient, it ticks all the boxes for a holistically sustainable build.

Discover more about the benefits of Clayton terracotta cladding.


Low Maintenance and Clean Aesthetics

Compared to other cladding materials, terracotta requires minimal upkeep, making it an ideal option for large-scale construction where ongoing maintenance can prove difficult. According to Architizer, terracotta can last up to 100 years without maintenance – strong and long-lasting, and not requiring any additives or added fibres to improve its strength. Terracotta is naturally a hardwearing material, which is unlikely to lose its colour or gloss or fade over time – preserving not only its integrity but also its appearance.

Fairview’s Clayton offers the enhanced low-maintenance terracotta cladding experience – designed to be easy to clean and maintain, it is also resistant to weathering as a result of harsh environmental conditions, and is scratch and dent resistant, maintaining its appearance over time. The concealed fixing system ensures a clean, seamless finish, reducing the risk of deterioration between tiles or around their edges.


The Versatility & Aesthetic Options Are Endless

The unique, rustic look of terracotta cladding is beloved worldwide, adding character and charm to any building. A timeless look that has inspired designers and builders for centuries, the terracotta tile look can be customised to blend seamlessly with any classic or contemporary design, with a range of colours, shapes and styles available.

Clayton project pic

Clayton offers a natural clay finish, giving it its traditional architectural appeal, and complementing endless design styles. Its versatility and variety of shapes, colours, glazes and profiles, means Clayton lends itself to a multitude of design aesthetics on its own – and when combined with other materials, such as steel, glass or wood, Clayton can add an extra touch of elegant timelessness to exterior façades. A cladding product that allows building occupants to experience and connect with the earth’s elements, Clayton can add biophilic beauty to a variety of façade applications – both indoor and outdoor.


Explore Terracotta Cladding Systems

Terracotta cladding systems offer a wealth of advantages that make them an attractive option for architects, builders and building owners alike. A functional cladding choice, they offer excellent thermal and cooling efficiency, improvement of sound protection and a non-combustible façade choice for large-scale projects. The durable tiles slot easily into rainscreen frames for efficient, concealed installation, and their longevity and lack of maintenance preserve the aesthetic of a building’s façade. Terracotta cladding allows designers to create landmark designs that will inspire future generations, without worrying about consuming resources on refinishing or replacement tiles.


Fairview’s Clayton terracotta cladding is a top choice for those seeking high-quality, durable, energy-efficient and aesthetically pleasing cladding. Durable, impact-resistant, scratch and dent resistant and able to withstand extreme weather and UV rays, Clayton stands out as a long-lasting choice for designs that will echo through the ages. With a concealed fixing system, excellent thermal efficiency and non-combustibility, Clayton is a reliable, compliant choice that will enhance any project.

Add timeless elegance, durability and reliability to your next project, for a striking design that will last the distance. Get in touch with Fairview on incorporating terracotta cladding into your next project.