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The Pros and Cons of Asphalt Shingles in Long Island, New York

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Clearview Roofing and Construction recommends asphalt shingles because they are cost-effective, durable, and easy to install. With proper maintenance, they last 10-30 years and are excellently resistant to UV and weather. Their variety of styles and colors can greatly enhance curb appeal. 

However, they have a significant environmental impact and can suffer from algae growth and wind damage. Proper ventilation and regular inspections are essential to maximizing their lifespan. While they provide good fire resistance, their high carbon footprint and landfill waste are notable drawbacks. 

In this guide, Clearview Roofing and Construction elaborates on the pros and cons of asphalt shingles to help you make an informed decision. 

Call (631) 827-7088 if you have more questions or need asphalt shingle installation. Our roofing contractor will answer all your questions so you can make an informed decision.

Key Takeaways

  • Asphalt shingles are affordable and easy to install, reducing overall project costs.
  • They offer robust weather resistance, protecting homes from harsh environmental conditions.
  • A wide variety of styles and colors enhances aesthetic appeal and property value.
  • Regular maintenance and proper ventilation can extend the lifespan up to 30 years.
  • High carbon footprints and landfill waste make them less environmentally friendly.

The Pros of Asphalt Shingles in Long Island, NY

Asphalt shingles are durable, affordable, easy to install, and diverse. They are also weather and fire-resistant.

1. Asphalt Shingles Offer Durability

Depending on climate conditions and maintenance practices, asphalt shingles last 10 to 30 years. One important factor influencing their longevity is UV resistance. Shingles with higher UV resistance can withstand prolonged exposure to harsh sunlight, which helps prevent premature aging and degradation of the materials. This resistance is vital in regions with high sun exposure, where UV rays can cause the shingles to become brittle and crack over time.

Warranty options for asphalt shingles also play a pivotal role in determining their functional lifespan. Manufacturers often offer warranties ranging from 20 years to lifetime coverage, depending on the quality and type of shingle. These warranties generally cover defects in materials and workmanship but may also include provisions for premature wear due to UV damage. Understanding the specifics of these warranties is crucial to grasp what’s covered fully and for how long, as this can significantly impact your maintenance and replacement schedules.

Proper maintenance practices, like regular inspections and timely repairs, can extend the life of asphalt shingles. For instance, promptly addressing minor issues like broken or missing shingles can prevent more extensive damage. Keeping gutters clean and ensuring proper attic ventilation can mitigate moisture buildup and heat damage, further enhancing the shingles’ durability.

2. Asphalt shingles are Affordable to Install

Asphalt shingles are significantly less expensive to install than roofing materials like metal or tile, making them an attractive option for many homeowners. Installation is straightforward, often leading to lower labor costs, further contributing to their cost-effectiveness.

Asphalt shingles offer a good balance between durability and maintenance expenses. While they may not last as long as some high-end materials, the cost savings from initial installation can be substantial. Additionally, asphalt shingles are relatively low maintenance, which means fewer roof leak repair costs over time.

Energy efficiency is another important factor. Modern asphalt shingles are often designed with reflective coatings that help reduce heat absorption. This energy-efficient feature can lower cooling costs in warmer climates, improving cost-effectiveness. Reducing energy consumption also contributes to a more sustainable environment, which is a valuable added benefit.

Moreover, the impact of asphalt shingles on resale value is significant. Homes with well-maintained asphalt shingle roofs can appeal more to potential buyers, enhancing the property’s market value. A new or recently updated asphalt shingle roof can be a strong selling point, assuring buyers about the roof’s condition and longevity.

Given these factors, asphalt shingles offer a compelling mix of affordability, energy efficiency, and positive influence on resale value. They present a practical roofing solution that balances initial and long-term economic considerations, making them a preferred choice for many.

3. Asphalt Shingles Offers Style Diversity

Asphalt shingles offer an impressive array of styles to suit any architectural preference. You can choose from extensive color palettes, varied textures, and designs that mimic more expensive materials. This versatility makes it easier to achieve the desired aesthetic while maintaining functional performance.

Various Color Options Available

Homeowners can revel in the sheer versatility of asphalt shingles, which offer an extensive palette of colors and styles to suit any architectural design. The aesthetic appeal of asphalt shingles is unmatched, allowing you to tailor your roofing choices to your custom preferences. Whether you desire a classic look with muted earth tones or a bold, contemporary statement with vibrant hues, the options are virtually limitless.

Asphalt shingles come in shades ranging from traditional blacks and grays to striking blues, greens, and reds. This wide color spectrum guarantees you can match or complement any home’s exterior, enhancing curb appeal and adding significant value. Additionally, manufacturers like GAF offer various Asphalt Shingle styles, such as three-tab, architectural, and luxury shingles, each with unique visual characteristics.

The ability to mix and match colors and styles gives you the freedom to create a roof that’s both functional and visually appealing. Advanced granule technology also plays an essential role, providing long-lasting color retention and resistance to fading. This ensures your chosen aesthetic will endure time, maintaining its beauty and integrity for years.

Texture Variety Available

Beyond the impressive array of colors, you can choose from various textures and styles of asphalt shingles. This versatility in surface finish provides both aesthetic appeal and practical benefits. The tactile sensation of different shingle textures can also contribute to your roofing system’s overall feel and functionality.

Here are some key texture options available:

  • Smooth Finish: Ideal for a sleek, modern look, smooth-finish shingles offer minimal texture, enhancing the clean lines of contemporary architectural designs. Their even surface also makes them easier to clean and maintain.
  • Granulated Finish: These shingles feature a rough, granular surface, which adds visual depth and increases traction. This texture can help reduce slipping hazards during maintenance, especially in wet conditions.
  • Dimensional Shingles: Also known as architectural shingles, these offer a varied surface texture that mimics the appearance of natural materials like wood or slate. The layered design provides a more dynamic, high-end look.
  • Textured Overlay: Combining smooth and rough elements, textured overlays offer a unique blend of aesthetics and functionality. The mixed surface finish can enhance your roof’s appearance and durability.

Asphalt Shingles Offer Various Architectural Styles

The architectural styles offered by asphalt shingles encapsulate a wide range of design possibilities, allowing you to tailor your roofing to complement any home aesthetic. Asphalt shingles provide significant design flexibility, catering to various architectural styles—from traditional to modern. This versatility stems from the wide array of colors, patterns, and shapes available, enabling you to achieve your desired aesthetic choices.

High-definition shingles, for instance, mimic the look of natural materials like slate or wood shake without the associated maintenance and cost. These options allow you to enhance the curb appeal of your properties while maintaining robust performance characteristics. Additionally, asphalt shingles can be customized with different cut styles, such as three-tab or architectural, each offering unique visual effects and performance benefits.

Architectural shingles, often thicker and more textured, provide a dimensional look that can enhance your roofs’ visual interest and depth.

Furthermore, asphalt shingles’ adaptability allows them to fit seamlessly with various roof pitches and complex architectural designs. Whether you aim for a sleek, minimalist appearance or a more intricate, layered look, asphalt shingles provide the design flexibility and aesthetic choices necessary to achieve our vision.

4. Asphalt Shingles Are Easy to Install 

When considering the ease of installing asphalt shingles, we recognize the straightforward process requiring only basic tools. This simplicity allows even less experienced installers to achieve effective results.

Additionally, the quick completion of the project makes asphalt shingles an attractive option for homeowners and roofing contractors.

Simple Installation Process

Installing asphalt shingles is straightforward due to their lightweight nature and compatibility with various roofing structures. We appreciate how this simplicity translates to a more efficient process that requires less manpower and results in fewer disruptions to our daily routines.

Here are some reasons why the installation process is so user-friendly:

  • Lightweight Material: Asphalt shingles are light, which makes them easier to handle and transport. This reduces the physical strain on the installation crew and speeds up the process.
  • Versatile Application: These shingles can be installed on various roof types, including steep or low-slope roofs. This compatibility means we don’t have to spend extra time or resources on specialized materials or techniques.
  • Pre-Cut Tabs: Most asphalt shingles come with pre-cut tabs, simplifying the alignment and attachment process. This ensures a uniform look and reduces the likelihood of installation errors.
  • Quick Securing: The nailing process for asphalt shingles is relatively quick and straightforward. This efficiency minimizes the time spent on the roof, allowing us to complete projects faster and more precisely.

Requires Basic Tools

Basic tools like a hammer, utility knife, and tape measure are all we need to efficiently install asphalt shingles, making the process accessible even for those without specialized equipment. 

Quick Project Completion

By leveraging basic tools, we can achieve quick project completion. Asphalt shingles are designed for ease of installation. Their straightforward application process greatly reduces the Asphalt Shingles installation timeline, allowing us to adhere to tight project scheduling.

5. Asphalt Shingles Offer Weather Resistance

Asphalt shingles are renowned for their robust weather resistance, providing reliable protection against diverse climatic conditions. This resilience stems from their composite structure, typically made from a fiberglass base mat coated with asphalt and mineral granules. Such a composition guarantees that asphalt shingles can withstand various environmental stressors, including extreme temperatures, precipitation, and UV radiation.

When it comes to hail damage, asphalt shingles perform exceptionally well. The mineral granules embedded in the shingles’ surface act as a protective layer, absorbing and dissipating the impact energy from hailstones. This minimizes the risk of punctures and cracks, common issues with other roofing materials. Additionally, manufacturers often offer shingles with enhanced impact resistance ratings designed to endure severe hailstorms.

Wind resistance is another critical factor in the weather resilience of asphalt shingles. Modern asphalt shingles are engineered to resist uplift forces generated by high winds. They feature adhesive strips that bond the shingles, creating a cohesive barrier against wind penetration. High-quality asphalt shingles are rated to withstand wind speeds up to 130 mph, making them suitable for regions prone to hurricanes and strong storms.

We must also consider the practicality of maintaining asphalt shingles. Their modular nature allows for easily replacing individual damaged shingles, which is advantageous for addressing localized issues like hail damage or wind uplift. In addition, proper installation and regular maintenance can enhance their weather resistance, ensuring your roofs remain intact and functional over time.

6. Asphalt Shingles Offer Fire Resistance

Fire resistance is an essential aspect of asphalt shingles, often determining their suitability for regions prone to wildfires. As experts in roofing materials, we understand that understanding how asphalt shingles perform under fire exposure is important for homeowners and builders alike. 

Let’s explore the key elements that make asphalt shingles viable for fire-prone areas.

  • Fire Codes Compliance: Asphalt shingles are classified based on fire resistance, typically falling into Class A, B, or C categories. Class A shingles offer the highest level of fire resistance, meeting stringent fire codes and providing the best protection against severe fire exposure.
  • Ember Resistance: One of the primary threats during wildfires is wind-borne embers, which can ignite roofing materials. High-quality asphalt shingles are designed to resist ignition from these embers, thereby reducing the risk of fire spreading to the structure.
  • Material Composition: The fire resistance of asphalt shingles is largely due to their material composition. Shingles reinforced with fiberglass tend to offer superior fire resistance compared to organic-mat-based shingles. Fiberglass shingles are less likely to catch fire and can withstand higher temperatures.
  • Installation Techniques: Proper installation plays a significant role in enhancing the fire resistance of asphalt shingles. Ensuring adequate shingle overlap, sealing roof edges, and maintaining roof ventilation can greatly improve fire performance.

The Cons of Asphalt Shingles in Long Island, NY

Despite their notable fire resistance, asphalt shingles can present certain issues that homeowners and builders should consider to make informed decisions. 

Asphalt shingles are prone to wind damage and thermal cracking. They also pose environmental challenges; in humid climates, they support algae growth.

1. Algae Can Grow in Asphalt Shingles

One primary concern is algae growth. In humid environments, algae can thrive on asphalt shingles, leading to unsightly dark streaks. This isn’t just a cosmetic issue; algae can deteriorate the shingles’ protective granules over time, reducing their lifespan. While some manufacturers offer algae-resistant options, these typically come at a higher cost. Regular maintenance, such as periodic cleaning with a mild bleach solution, can help mitigate algae growth but requires ongoing effort and expense.

2. Asphalt Shingles Are Prone to Wind Damage

Another significant issue is wind damage. While asphalt shingles are generally rated to withstand winds up to a certain speed, severe storms and high wind events can dislodge or tear them. Once shingles are compromised, the underlying roof structure is exposed to water infiltration, leading to leaks and potentially significant structural damage. Wind damage is particularly problematic in regions prone to hurricanes or tornadoes. Ensuring proper installation with sufficient adhesive and nails can enhance resistance, but it’s not foolproof. Homeowners in high-wind areas might need to contemplate alternative roofing materials or enhanced fastening methods to guarantee durability.

3. Asphalt Shingles can be Susceptible to Thermal Cracking

Temperature fluctuations cause the shingles to expand and contract, which can eventually lead to cracks, reducing their protective capabilities. While newer formulations have improved flexibility, older roofs might still suffer from this issue.

4. Asphalt Shingles Pose Environmental Challenges

While diligently safeguarding our asphalt shingles guarantees their durability, we must also consider the broader environmental impact these roofing materials have throughout their lifecycle. Although popular for their cost-effectiveness and ease of installation, asphalt shingles pose significant environmental challenges that warrant our attention.

The production process of asphalt shingles contributes to a substantial carbon footprint. The extraction, refinement, and transportation of raw materials, mainly petroleum-based, release considerable greenhouse gases, which not only affect air quality but also accelerate climate change.

The disposal of asphalt shingles results in significant landfill waste. Annually, millions of tons of these shingles end up in landfills, where they can take up to 300 years to decompose. The non-biodegradable nature of asphalt shingles means they occupy valuable landfill space, contributing to the growing waste management problem.

Recycling options for asphalt shingles are limited and not widely adopted. While it’s technically feasible to repurpose them into new shingles or paving materials, the infrastructure and market demand for such recycled products are insufficient. This results in the majority of discarded shingles not being recycled, exacerbating the environmental burden.

The chemical composition of asphalt shingles includes additives that can leach into the soil and water systems once they start degrading. This contamination poses risks to the environment and public health.

Considering these factors, it’s vital to weigh the environmental costs alongside the functional benefits when choosing asphalt shingles for our roofing needs.

Call (631) 827-7088. Clearview Roofing and Construction experts will guide you and answer all your asphalt shingle roofing questions. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Asphalt Shingles Be Recycled After Their Lifespan Ends?

Yes, asphalt shingles can be recycled after their lifespan ends. Using specialized recycling processes, they are repurposed into materials like road asphalt. This mitigates environmental impact and conserves natural resources.

How Do Asphalt Shingles Perform in Extreme Heat Conditions?

Asphalt shingles generally offer decent heat resistance, but prolonged exposure to high temperatures can accelerate UV degradation, leading to brittleness, cracking, and reduced lifespan. To mitigate these effects, opt for shingles with UV-resistant coatings and proper ventilation to enhance their durability and performance under intense heat.

Are There Any Special Considerations for Installing Asphalt Shingles in Coastal Areas?

Two critical factors must be considered when installing asphalt shingles in coastal areas: Salt corrosion can degrade the shingles over time. Hence, choosing shingles with enhanced corrosion-resistant coatings is crucial. Additionally, coastal regions often experience high winds, demanding shingles with superior wind resistance ratings to prevent damage. Proper installation techniques, including reinforced fastening methods, are essential for ensuring long-term durability and protection against these coastal challenges.

What Are the Best Practices for Cleaning Asphalt Shingles?

When cleaning asphalt shingles, focus on preventing moss growth and algae. To kill existing moss and algae, use a 50:50 water and bleach solution. Gently scrub the shingles with a soft brush to avoid damage. Rinse thoroughly with water, ensuring no bleach residue remains. Install zinc or copper strips near the roof’s peak to prevent future growth. Regular inspections help maintain cleanliness.

Do Asphalt Shingles Contribute to Better Home Insulation?

While asphalt shingles provide some degree of insulation, they aren’t the most effective option for energy efficiency. However, they can help maintain indoor comfort by reflecting sunlight and reducing heat absorption. For best thermal performance, combine them with proper attic insulation and ventilation. This integrated approach guarantees better energy efficiency and enhances overall indoor comfort.

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