bird sitting on a shingled roof


Asphalt Shingles 101

When it comes to your home, you don’t want to simply guess when it’s time to make long-lasting decisions. You deserve to make an informed choice regarding your new roof. That’s why we will be going over the 3 most common types of roofing materials, starting with shingles. 

Asphalt shingles are made of a fiberglass matt with asphalt worked into it, with a colored granule top coat. These come in either flat tab shingles or raised panel architectural shingles, although these days the “upgraded” architectural shingle is pretty much the standard.

The Benefits


For most people, price is the first factor they consider when it comes to home improvement, and asphalt shingles are typically the most economical option. The materials are the least expensive of the options, and because it is the most commonly used, the labor costs are lower than the other options as well. And speaking of labor…


Asphalt shingles are the quickest and easiest to install of any of the roofing products available. The other options are considered specialties, and you may sometimes have a challenge finding a qualified contractor to install some of them. But every roofer is experienced with asphalt shingles. Asphalt shingles will also get your project done as quickly as possible.

Universal Acceptance

There are some neighborhoods with exacting building guidelines that will not allow some of the specialty roofs. But asphalt shingles are accepted everywhere.

Especially with modern houses with multiple rooflines and valleys, asphalt shingles will generate the least amount of waste roofing product, further reducing your material cost relative to some of the other options.


Asphalt shingles typically come with 30-40 year manufacturer’s warranties, and while not as durable as the other options we will look at, still a very good product. (Keep in mind that these warranty lifespans are only under ideal conditions. Most roofs do not last this long in real life.) 

Asphalt shingles are the most common roofing material for a reason. They offer many benefits for a reasonable price. But there are a few other facts to consider. 

The Drawbacks


One of the biggest risks to shingled roofs are storms, which can rip off individual or sections of tile. Asphalt shingles are also susceptible to hail damage. Excess moisture and heat will also damage the shingles over time. Thankfully, ease with which new shingles can be installed means that most damage is reversable. 


Asphalt shingles certainly won’t affect your curb appeal. But some people are interested in something a little more modern and styleish. If that describes you, check out our articles on standing seam roofs, or stone-coated shingles. 






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