A Guide to Asphalt Composite Shingles

Asphalt shingle roofing has been around since the late 1800s. Today, asphalt is by far the most common roofing material used throughout the world.

That is because asphalt composite shingles offer many advantages. But a lot of people do not realize that there are a lot of options for asphalt shingles, including design, quality, and materials.

This article covers the basics of asphalt composite shingles. Keep reading to find out what qualities to look for, so you can choose the best one for your home or business.

A Note on Terminology

The terms "asphalt shingles" and "composite shingles" are often used interchangeably. Sometimes, when contractors talk about "composite shingles," they are referring to asphalt shingles. There are technically some distinctions though.

"Composite shingles" is a general term that means they are made from a combination of ingredients. This can be anything from recycled materials to slate, laminate, wood, and asphalt. In short, you can have asphalt composite shingles, but not all composite shingles are asphalt.

What Are Asphalt Composite Shingles?

Asphalt composite shingles have several layers. This starts with a base layer of weather-grade asphalt that also acts as a flame retardant.

Next is a strong fiberglass or organic-material mat that gives the shingle structure. This is important for handling as well as durability after installation. This is usually followed by another layer of asphalt.

The top layer is ceramic-coated granules. These are crushed rock particles that protect the shingle from the sun's UV rays and give it coloring. Some shingles also come with self-adhesive layers on the top or bottom layer for easier installation.

What Are the Advantages of Asphalt Composite Shingles?

There are many advantages to asphalt composite shingles. First, you can expect them to last and function well for decades.

Asphalt shingles are extremely resistant to wind, impact, and things like algae growth. They also require minimal roof maintenance.

You also get superior protection for a limited cost. The textiles that go into asphalt shingles are not expensive, and they are easy to install. This means you can save on both material and labor costs.

A final advantage is that there are lots of options in terms of color, texture, and style of asphalt shingles. Beyond standard gray, you can choose from brown, black, tan, and other colors.

You can select premium asphalt shingles that resemble wood and bring a look of luxury to your home. Dimensional or "architectural" shingles have two layers of material bonded together. This gives them a three-dimensional appearance (that standard shingles lack).

One of the main reasons people choose dimensional shingles is aesthetics. They have the appearance of cedar shingles but still give you the durability and performance of asphalt ones.

Find Asphalt Composite Shingles Near You

Now that you understand the basics of asphalt composite shingles, you can decide if this is the best option for your home or business. A professional roofing contractor can further advise you on the best choices for your particular project.

For more than 30 years, Pearson Family Roofing has been providing quality residential and commercial roof repair and new roof installation to the Austin area. Our goal is to provide you with roofing solutions that will look great and perform well for years. Contact us today for a free quote on roofing replacement.


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