Roofing 101 - Asphalt Shingles
Asphalt Shingles - Function and Style
Asphalt shingles are a proven roof covering material that is available in many styles, shapes and colours. Architectural shingle types - such as laminates - are rapidly gaining in popularity. Asphalt shingles are suitable for most residential applications. In fact, industry estimates show approximately 80% of the total residential roofs are covered with asphalt shingles. Properly installed asphalt shingles will not only effectively shed water off the roof; they will enhance the beauty, character and value of your home. Lastly, asphalt shingles are backed by a warranty typically ranging from 20 years to Lifetime.
Making Asphalt Roofing Products
Asphalt Roofing Products are manufactured in a continuous process using organic felt or fiberglass mat as the core materials on which other components are layered. The organic felt is saturated and coated with hot asphalt and the top surface is then covered with a protective layer of coloured, U.V. resistant ceramic granules. The fiberglass mat is coated with hot asphalt and the top surface is then covered with a protective layer of coloured U.V. resistant ceramic granules.
Advantages of Asphalt Shingles
- Affordable Cost: Compared to other roofing products, asphalt shingles are relatively inexpensive.
- Peace of Mind: Asphalt shingles have been around for over 100 years. They have a proven track record in our harsh climatic conditions.
- Availability: Asphalt shingles are commonly available at most lumberyards.
- Suitability: Asphalt shingles are available in a wide selection of sizes, styles and colours, suitable for most residential applications.
- Warranty Coverage: Asphalt shingles are protected with warranty periods ranging from 20 years to Lifetime, which will suit any budget and needs.
- User-Friendly: Experienced Do-It-Yourselfers can apply asphalt shingles successfully.
- Low Maintenance and Easy Repairs: Other more expensive roofing products can require more maintenance, specialized tools, can be more difficult to repair and almost always require professional installation.
Asphalt shingles meet other roofing material types
In the roofing industry, there are currently other, more expensive materials available to cover roofs. Some products include Metal or Wood shingles and Concrete or Slate tiles, these materials generally require professional installation which can be quite expensive. Some of these products are quite heavy on the roof structure and are not necessarily suitable for all roof types. The maintenance required to keep these products looking good surpasses by far the low maintenance required with asphalt shingles.
Choosing the right shingles for your roof
Many variables will guide you in the decision of which shingle type is suitable for your dream roof. The choice of shingles must consider the budget available, the style of the roof and its slope, the warranty coverage desired, and the reputation and track record of the roofing products manufacturer.
Plain facts about Organic and Fiberglass Shingles
Both types of shingles, when applied properly will perform well. In order to better compare, here is some helpful information.
- Have many decades of proven performance.
- Organic shingles are softer and easier to work with than fiberglass shingles, especially in cold weather applications.
- Contain more asphalt and nearly always use heavier weight reinforcement than fiberglass shingles of similar weight.
- Absorb roof stresses better and are more tear-resistant than fiberglass shingles.
- Are typically thicker than fiberglass shingles and are better capable to hide minor imperfections in the roof deck or the old layer of shingles.
- Are more resistant to heat, which may cause blisters to form on softer organic shingles.
- On most application, fiberglass shingles require the installation of an asphalt saturated felt underlayment.
- Are more resistant to curling, which can happen with organic shingles after many years of service.
- Roof assemblies covered with fiberglass shingles have a higher fire resistance rating than roof assemblies covered with organic shingles.
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