Asphalt Shingles: They’re Not Obsolete!
With the increasing popularity of roofing materials like steel, aluminum, and composite, some homeowners have assumed that asphalt shingles are no longer a good choice. Indeed, the seemingly flimsy asphalt shingles of yesteryear pale in comparison to today’s carefully engineered roofing materials. But today’s asphalt shingles are not the thin, weak slabs you used to see on your grandparents’ home. Asphalt shingles are not obsolete, and in fact, they’re a great choice for many homeowners.
Here’s a look at some advantages of modern asphalt shingles—and features you may not have known are available.
Long Life Expectancies
Today’s architectural shingles often have a warranty of 30 years or more, and the highest-quality, luxury-grade shingles are often warrantied up to 50 years. This lifespan is about as long as the typical metal roof lasts, and it is longer than the lifespan of most cedar roofs. If you plan on staying in your current home, replacing your roof with top-quality asphalt shingles could mean you never have to replace your roof again in your lifetime.
Asphalt shingles are easier to install than most other roofing materials. As a result, your roofing company can complete your project more quickly, which translates to easier scheduling and lower installation costs. It’s still important to have your asphalt roof installed by a knowledgeable, experienced roofing team, and it’s typically easier to find a company that works with asphalt shingles than one that specializes in other, less popular materials.
Higher Energy Efficiency
In Omaha, where the summers are hot and sunny, it’s important to choose an energy-efficient roof. A roofing material that absorbs a lot of heat from the sun will increase the temperature of your home and force your air conditioner to work overtime. While some homeowners opt for metal roofs because of the material’s reflective qualities, cool asphalt shingles are also a great choice.
Cool shingles are carefully engineered to reflect infrared and ultraviolet wavelengths in sunlight. This feature keeps the roof cool, even when the temperature outside soars. As a result, your home stays more comfortable, your energy bills stay manageable, and your roof experiences less heat-caused deterioration. Cool shingles also come in every color.
Greater Wind Resistance
Several decades ago, homeowners in windy areas were often advised to steer clear of asphalt shingles because the shingles would lift up during storms. However, shingles are now engineered to be resistant to gusts. Each shingle is tested and assigned a wind zone rating. In Omaha, building codes require shingles to be resistant to winds up to 90 miles per hour. This resistance is indicated as a “Class D” rating.
Higher Algae Resistance
If you have trees that hang over your roof, you may worry about algae growth since the shingles remain moist and shaded. Algae growth causes unattractive, black streaks to develop on roofs. Thankfully, algae-resistant shingles are available. These shingles contain copper granules which deter the growth of algae and keep roofs looking clean and uniform, even in shady and moist areas.
Prices vary widely, and you’ll certainly pay more for specialty cool shingles and algae-resistant options than for typical, architectural shingles. However, asphalt shingles overall tend to be the most affordable roof replacement option. If you’re on a budget, let your roofing contractor know how much you can afford to spend, and he or she can recommend the best shingles at that price range.
Asphalt shingles come in so many different colors and options that it seems unfair to generalize them all into one category. Whether your primary goal is affordability, wind resistance, energy efficiency, or algae resistance, there’s sure to be an asphalt shingle option that meets your needs. Contact a local roofing contractor to schedule an estimate and learn more about your options.