In the world of home construction and repairs, clients come from all walks of life. But one thing that customers have in common is that a good deal is always welcome. No matter the state of your budget, if you can spend less to get quality results, you get the most benefits for your investment. This is why asphalt shingles have gained immense popularity after being introduced into the home repair market.
As an affordable, durable alternative to high-end roofing materials, asphalt can protect your roof without breaking the bank. In addition, top companies like CertainTeed have taken this traditionally economic material to the next level, enhancing asphalt with aesthetic and performance and energy-saving boosts, making it a viable alternative to natural wood, stone, and metal.
So what makes up a basic asphalt shingle? How many different grades and types of asphalt are there? What makes it a dependable, go-to material for homeowners around the country? And how can you find an asphalt shingle that has additional features like sun reflection and impact protection? This guide will tell you all you need to know about an asphalt shingle’s basic anatomy and how to pick a quality brand for your next upgrade.
Basic Asphalt Shingle Grades
Asphalt shingles are so useful that they are common choices for both residential and commercial roofing. Here are the three typical grades of this roofing material:
- Saturant-grade: This non-oxidized or oxidized asphalt is used in making BUR (built-up roofing) systems, organic felt shingles, and other roofing materials like roll roofing.
- Coating-grade: This is an oxidized asphalt used to make asphalt shingles, polymer-modified bitumen roofing, reinforcing and underlayment felts, and roll roofing products.
- Mopping-grade: Another oxidized asphalt type that is used in BUR and modified bitumen systems.
Asphalt Shingle Benefits
Asphalt grew in popularity in the early 20th century for its many benefits, which include:
- Affordability: Asphalt can be made quickly and in high-volume, which results in lower product cost. There is also less labor to install it. These two factors, combined with its long life, offers incredible lifetime value.
- Weather Resistance: Asphalt across all grades resists damage from sunlight, heat, cold, water and ice.
- Fire Resistance: Asphalt products comply with international standards for fire resistance.
- Wind Resistance: Asphalt roofing products adhere to official wind-resistant standards.
- Easy, More Affordable Application: It’s the easiest to apply of all standard roofing materials, saving contractors time and you money on installation.
- Adaptability: Asphalt can be applied on many of roof styles, suiting a wide variety of homes and businesses.
- Good Looks: It’s available in many colors, shapes, and depths that provide options that are compatible with most architectural styles, ranging from contemporary to traditional.
- Low-Maintenance: When properly applied, asphalt roofing products require little or no upkeep and are easy to repair.
Standard Asphalt Shingle Anatomy
The asphalt shingle that you see in typical homes is the square butt strip shingle. It’s usually rectangular in shape and comes in one or three tabs. This form makes it easy for your contractor to lay out the shingles and install them. Its made of two basic layers:
- First layer: This bottom layer is a base mat or organic material, like cellulose or glass fibers.
- Second layer: The first layer is then coated with asphalt and surfaced with ceramic-coated opaque mineral granules to provide weatherproofing qualities. The granules protect the roof from ultraviolet rays and offer fire protection.
Taking Asphalt to the Next Level
Even though all asphalt roofing products are made by following the same principle of a base and top layer, we do recommend certain brands if you want to get a product that has guaranteed performance and extra features. For example, if you live in a hot climate, then CertainTeed Cool Roofs, which are coated with a top layer that reflects more sunlight, can help you save on energy bills.
GAF and TAMKO also offer incredibly durable asphalt products that replicate the looks of natural materials that you love like stone and wood. This allows homeowners to get the dream look of wood and slate without the added cost or upkeep. Depending on what type of products you pick, these brands offer asphalt shingles in all different price points, from standard to luxury. Therefore, you can find asphalt products that are just as luxurious as traditional luxury building materials.
If you need an expert product recommendation, simply ask us. We have helped many people find the right material for their roof replacement or repair. Give us a call and tell us what you have in mind. We’ll be glad to guide you toward the best decision for your needs and budget.
Trust Your Roof Replacement to Noble Roofing
Whether you’re looking for better form or function, or simply feel that a new roof is in order, trust Noble Roofing, the preferred choice for roof replacement in Centreville VA and surrounding cities. Give us call at (703) 404-0505 to speak with our roofing experts. You can also request a free estimate through our online request form today.