Asphalt shingles are the most popular roofing material in the United States and are found on approximately 70 percent of the nation’s homes. Homeowners choose asphalt shingles for a variety of reasons; they are economical, attractive and require relatively little maintenance. If you have ever been curious about asphalt shingles, here is everything that you need to know about them.
Construction of Asphalt Shingles
To produce asphalt shingles, manufacturers start with a mat. The mat may be woven fiberglass or recycled felt paper. Shingles containing a fiberglass mat are referred to as fiberglass shingles; those containing a felt mat are called organic shingles. The mat is coated with asphalt to make it waterproof. Ceramic granules are then pressed into the asphalt to provide the color as well as to protect the asphalt from the sun’s rays.
Types of Asphalt Shingles
There are two basic types of asphalt shingles sold in the United States. The three-tab style was the first shingle manufactured in a standardized size. It is the most economical choice, which is one reason that it is the best-selling style of shingle in the nation. Each three-tab shingle is cut along the edge to make it appear as if it consists of three individual pieces. Architectural shingles consist of a flat, uncut shingle onto which a second layer is laminated. This gives the shingles a three-dimensional look.
Styles of Asphalt Shingles
Over the years, manufacturers have become quite adept as producing asphalt shingles that resemble other types of roofing materials. You can find asphalt shingles that look like tile, slate or wood shakes. Some manufacturers produce asphalt shingles in different shapes. For example, you can find square shingles that resemble slate and are an ideal choice for Colonial homes, or you might choose shingles with a scalloped edge for a Victorian home.
Colors of Asphalt Shingles
Shingle manufacturers are offering a wider variety of colors than ever. Naturally, you can still find the basic shades such as white, charcoal gray or dark brown, but you can also find green, blue and beige. Shingles that have the reddish-orange color of bricks or that feature hints of aqua are also available.
Special Features Available
Although not every manufacturer offers the same special features for every line of asphalt shingles, there are many options available. You can find shingles that reflect heat to save on energy costs, for example, or shingles that have been treated to help prevent the growth of algae.
Contact Alpha Roofing to Learn More
At Alpha Roofing, we have been installing asphalt shingles in Austin and most of Central Texas for more than 35 years. Our highly trained crews work only for us, and they have the skills and experience needed to provide you with exceptional results at affordable prices. We also install metal roofing systems, siding, skylights and we repair roofs, chimneys and flashing. To receive a free estimate, you can call us at (512) 777-1086 or submit our online form.