What is Shingle Roofing?
Shingles are the most common roofing material in North America. They can be made from a wide variety of materials, such as slate, plastic, and composites, but they are most commonly made out of asphalt. Each roofing shingle is small and rectangular. When installed, they overlap to keep out water. Asphalt is used because of its waterproof properties. They’re popular because the up-front cost is relatively low, and the installation itself is fairly easy and straightforward for professional roofers. When homeowners on a budget compare tile roofs vs. shingle roofs, they often choose shingles because of the price.
Roofing shingles come in a variety of shapes, textures, and colors, making them architecturally versatile. They reflect sunlight well, which is an advantage in hot climates, and they’re also designed to resist both, fire damage and algae growth. They can deteriorate from moss growth and accumulated debris, so shingle roofs need to be cleaned with specialized solutions.
Advantages of Shingle Roofs
There are plenty of reasons the majority of homeowners go with new asphalt shingle roofs when it is time to replace the old one.
- Affordability — Asphalt shingles are one of the most affordable roofing materials available. They can also last for up to 20 years, making this type of roof a worthwhile investment, particularly if you do not plan to live in this home forever.
- Easy Installation — The ease of installation means that installing a new roof is a fast process. The overall time it will take for expert roofers to install your new roof can range from one to several days depending on many factors, such as the size of your roof, the weather ,and the condition of your roof’s underlying structure. Further, any repairs that you may need throughout the roof’s life are quick and easy to complete.
- Versatility — Asphalt shingles can be installed on almost any type of roof as they do not need any specialized accessories, such as homes with steep-sloped roofs and those with chimneys and vents.
- Variety — For such an affordable roofing material, there is a ton of different asphalt shingle styles, colors, and prices available. That means that you will almost certainly find a style and color that matches your home’s theme in a price range that works for you.
- Safety — Many roofing material companies offer composite shingles that have Class A fire protection. That means that the shingles are fire resistant, allowing you and your family additional time to leave home in the event a fire breaks out.
Disadvantages Of Shingle Roofing
Let’s start with the disadvantages because everything in life has them. When it comes to shingle roofing, the main disadvantages that you must watch out for here include:
- Shingles are susceptible to high wind damage – strong winds can uplift or tear shingles off easily.
- Asphalt roof shingles not only transfer solar heat into your home, they can become damaged by the heat.
- Mildew problems caused by excess moisture pooling in shady areas of your roof can damage shingles easily.
- Depending on the type of shingle, asphalt roofs are easily outlasted by tile, slate and metal, lasting on average 15 to 30 years.
Types of Asphalt Shingles
How do I choose the right asphalt shingles?
The options may seem overwhelming, but asphalt shingles are a great choice for almost any home. Asphalt shingles are durable, affordable and come in incredible variety of colors and styles to match almost any exterior. So how do you choose?
- 3-tab Asphalt Shingle
What’s there to love about a 3-tab shingle? 3-tab shingles are affordable and can last a couple decades in the right conditions.
What’s the problem with 3-tab shingles? Fewer aesthetic options, potential blow-off issues and a shorter lifespan.
- Dimensional Asphalt Shingles
What’s there to love about a dimensional shingle? Strength, baby. Dimensional shingles are extremely durable. These shingles boast a multi-dimensional texture and appearance, and can last 30 years or longer.
What’s the problem with dimensional shingles? You’ll pay more upfront for dimensional asphalt shingles than you will for 3-tab shingles.
- Luxury Asphalt Shingles
What’s there to love about luxury asphalt shingles? Multi-Dimensional appearance; maximum durability; more affordable than slate or cedar alternatives.
How to Inspect Your Roof for Damage
It’s smart to regularly inspect your roof, especially if you live an area with adverse weather throughout the year. It’s best to get up and inspect the roof up-close, but you can also get away with inspecting the roof from the ground with binoculars.
Here are a few things you should look for when inspecting roof damage:
- Look under eaves and overhangs for damage that might mean water leakage
- Look for sagging in the roof, along with unevenness
- Analyze the flashing for damage or for inadequate coverage
- Look for any open seams that could cause it to leak
- Look at the attic interior for signs of leaks, moldy spots, gaps or sagging sheathing
- Look for dark patches or growth
- Look for raised or rusted nails, as well as stains around nails, indicating they’re loose
- Check ventilation sources to ensure they’re not blocked by debris
- Inspect gutters for sagging, signs of leaks, and accumulation of granules