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Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt Shingles


What are they and how are they made?


Asphalt shingles are by far the most widely-used type of roofing material. In the US 4 out of 5 homes have asphalt roofing.

Asphalt can be either organic or fiberglass based. Organic-based asphalt shingles are made with a mat or substrate composed of an array of cellulose fibers, such as recycled materials like paper or wood fibers. The organic base is then coated with a specially formulated asphalt coating and weather resistant mineral granules. Fiberglass-based asphalt shingles are made of mat composed entirely of glass fibers that are also covered with asphalt coating and weather-resistant mineral granules.



Durability: Asphalt shingles are remarkably durable. Among roofing professionals, asphalt is often referred to as flexible pavement because of it’s ability to endure the stress of the inevitable subgrade settlement that occurs over time, without cracking.

Cost-Effectiveness: Asphalt is the most economical option in roofing materials. There is such a very range of price-points from the most cost-effective to very premium options. You can find a budget-appropriate asphalt choice for any project.

Ease: Asphalt is very easy to install easy and repair. The necessary materials are widely available and there is a surplus of qualified roofing professionals that are licensed in asphalt shingle installation and repair.

Work well in most climates: Asphalt shingles hold up impressively well in extreme elements and therefore are exceedingly popular in areas where wind, heavy rainfall, and significant ice accumulation are prevalent. Moreover, they are manufactured to be fire resistant and can be acquired with A, B, or C fire resistance ratings.

Environmentally Friendly: Asphalt shingles are a very green and sustainable option. The materials used to make asphalt shingles are most often recycled materials. The shingles themselves can be easily recycled once they are finished being roofs. Moreover, most scrap from the asphalt production process is recycled.

Widest Range of Design Options: Aesthetically, asphalt shingles can be found in a seemingly endless array of colors, textures, and styles. They can even be manufactured to resemble wood, cedar, or slate.


Weight: Asphalt is heavy! The most common and shingles weigh about 200 pounds per square, and some higher-end architectural options can weigh close to 500 pounds per square.

Widely-used: Since asphalt shingles are the most prevalent roof material choice, the result can be a bit redundant. Despite the plethora of options, with 80% of homes using this material, whatever you and your designer come up with is likely to have been seen and done before. A lot.

May require greater upkeep in extreme weather: Asphalt can be susceptible to damage from very extreme weather conditions such as regular hail or lack of sunlight which encourages the growth of mildew, moss, and algae.

Estimated lifetime:

Manufacturer warranties for asphalt shingles usually last about 20 years. Therefore the average homeowner would only ever have to replace their roofing once, if ever. Most asphalt shingle roofs last between 15-30 years depending on your area’s climate and environmental factors. Areas which regularly endure long summers with high heat may have a shorter asphalt shingle life span than cooler regions. Inversely, roofs in areas with severe winters may suffer from ice dams forming as water freezes that could cause cracks and fissures. These cracks or fissures will eventually need to be repaired.


In a Nutshell: Asphalt shingles are durable, affordable and very versatile as well as widely accessible, and therefore, are the most frequently used residential roofing material.


Fun Facts:

  • Asphalt shingles have been the most widely used roofing material in the US for over a century!
  • Recycled shingles are widely used in paving. That road you take to work? It might have lived another life as someone’s roof


ProPoint Roofing & Construction
W5585 County Rd MM #410
La Crosse, WI 54601
(608) 386-7338