Throughout history, innovators have used a wide variety of materials for home roofing projects. Based on the supplies available, roofs have been covered with everything from grasses used in thatching and split bamboo, tiles made from clay, rock and even metal sheeting. Early in the twentieth century, asphalt shingles were invented, and in the 1920s, they became increasingly popular in a push to eliminate the fire hazard of wood shingles in construction. More than a century later, asphalt shingles continue to be a preferred material for roofing projects.
Asphalt Shingles are Cost-Effective
According to Home Innovation’s Annual Consumer Practices Report, approximately 80% of roofing projects in the United States use asphalt shingles. Several factors influence asphalt shingling’s popularity as compared to other materials:
- The starting cost per square foot is about half as much as wood, steel or concrete roofing.
- The weight of an asphalt roof is considerably less than those of slate, tile or concrete, lessening the need, and therefore the cost, for roof reinforcements
- Asphalt shingles are relatively easy to install. Some experienced homeowners choose to cut costs even further by installing themselves. However, it is highly recommended that a contractor be used, keeping safety and speed of installation in mind.
- As with many markets, suppliers generally keep asphalt shingles in stock, ready for the consumer because they are in high demand. In contrast, other materials may need to be selected and ordered well ahead of the actual date of installation.
Asphalt Shingles are Recyclable
Many homeowners may not be aware that asphalt shingles can be recycled. On average, the shingles removed from a modern home can be processed and used to pave about 200 feet of a two-lane highway. Fortunately, there are a few locations in the Minneapolis area that accept shingles for recycling. In your search for a contractor, be sure to communicate your desire to have your roofing materials recycled if possible.
Design Options Galore for Asphalt Shingles.
Regardless of the style of roof on your home, there is an asphalt shingle that will achieve the look you have in mind. Some architectural shingles are made to mimic cedar shakes, tile or slate roofing. They are available in an assortment of colors and textures, helping to tie all the elements of exterior home design together.
The Contractors Association of Minnesota is a great resource for finding a roofing contractor or inquiring about any contracting question in the Minneapolis area. Email or give us a call when you’re ready to top off your roofing project.