What Do Shingles Do for a Roof?

red shingle roof providing a quality protection

Choosing Shingles for your Home

Are all roof shingles the same? What are the longest-lasting shingles? Every day, homeowners around the country ask questions about making the best choices for their roof. That’s important. Your roof is the first line of defense in protecting your home. It’s critical to get the right roofing material and keep it up to make sure nothing goes wrong. Not only does a shingle roof look great and offer excellent curb appeal, but they also perform an important part in your roof’s function. A shingle roof is common in the U.S. because it’s affordable and easy to maintain. Here, we take a look at shingle roof benefits and the difference between some shingles on the market.

What Shingles Do

On a very basic level, shingles create a watertight seal on your roof to protect your home from rain, wind, and other water damage. Shingles help control water flow off of your roof to prevent leaks and holes from developing. They also stop rodents and other small animals from getting inside. Roof shingles also serve a cosmetic purpose to beautify your home. They come in different colors and shapes to fit your design goals. The most common types of shingle roofs are asphalt, slate, metal, wood, and clay. Each material varies in cost and requires different maintenance.

Are There Different Grades of Roofing Shingles?

By far, the most popular shingle material in the country is asphalt. Homeowners and property developers love to use asphalt because it’s versatile and affordable. It can be replaced and repaired quickly as well. Generally, asphalt shingles come in three different grades. Colloquially, they’re known as good, better, and best.

The lower tier or “good” shingles are usually called “3-tab” shingles that are flat and typically have the shortest lifespan. Moving up, there are architectural shingles and dimensional shingles that are slightly thicker (about the thickness of three basic shingles) and come in different dimensions. They have a longer warranty and give a roof a more textured look. Higher grades denote thicker shingles that last longer and offer more design versatility.

Is There Such a Thing as 50 Year Shingles?

What are the longest lasting roof shingles? Some shingle manufacturers make shingles that are designed to last much longer than normal asphalt shingles. There are 30 and 50-year shingles that come with longer guarantees that cover performance. 50-year shingles often use special materials as they are manufactured to make them last longer and maintain their appearance better over their lifespan. These types of shingles cost more but will stand up to long-term rain, wind, hail, and other harsh weather conditions for longer on your shingle roof.

roof shingle damage on a roof

When Should Roof Shingles be Replaced?

On a basic level, roof shingles need to be replaced when they come loose or fall off your roof. That can happen for several reasons. Strong winds, loose roofing nails, or rain can shake them free. As a homeowner, it’s a good idea to walk outside and do a visual check on your roof every once in a while. If you’re missing roof shingles, it exposes your roof. Most homes use a combination of shingle roof and felt for protection. Felt is a tar paper layer that’s installed underneath your shingles as an added layer of protection.

Other areas of your roof, like if you shingle around a roof vent, can come loose because they’re often cut or installed in a custom pattern that could loosen or deteriorate faster. Homeowners also do shingle roof work when their shingles fade and they want to improve the look of their property. It’s really up to you.

The Benefits of Shingle Roofing

Shingles roofs offer the most design variety and affordability of any roofing material. Even within the shingle category, you have a lot of choices around:

  • Quality
  • Lifespan
  • Color
  • Shape
  • Design

Manufacturers have put decades into developing shingles to make them work better and last longer than ever. Now, most shingles have a Class A fire rating and withstand high winds in different climates around the country. They’re also energy-efficient because they help you moderate indoor temperatures. That decreases your reliance on air conditioning or heating, which saves you money on your monthly utility bills.

If you’re considering shingles for your roof, contact a professional roofing company for an opinion. Whether you need spot shingle repair or want an entire roof installed, they’ll be able to walk you through different price and design choices to find a solution that works for you. Shingle roofs are popular because they don’t require a ton of maintenance and look great. They’re light, so they don’t place as much of a strain on your home over the years. If sustainability is something you’re interested in, asphalt shingles are usually recyclable after they’re replaced. Take a look at what durable, quality shingles can do for you. Want to learn more about roof shingles in Glastonbury and Hartford, CT? Call 860-633-7243 today!