What is a Shingle Roof?
A Shingle roof is a roof that is covered with a type of material called shingles. One of the elements or factors that organizes this type of roof into its own category is the shape and functionality of the shingles themselves. Shingles are generally flat and rectangular and they are applied from the base or bottom of the roof upwards. As they are applied the previous sheet or section of shingles is overlapped. This process of overlapping continues until the entire roof has successfully been covered from base to top.
Benefits of Shingle Roofs
Having a shingle roof can have many great benefits. Some of these benefits manifest themselves right away, and others become more evident as time passes. Here is a list of the greatest benefits of having a shingle roof.
The cost efficiency is one of the many benefits of having a shingle roof. Asphalt shingles are manufactured and purchased in bulk. Because of this, these shingles come cheaper than other roofing materials.
Shingle installation takes much less expertise than installation of other materials, so that makes them more cost efficient as well. Shingles have been named as the easiest material to install for roofs, so labor of installation does not cost as much as it would for other roofing materials.
Asphalt shingles are some of the lighter roofing materials as compared to slate, tile, and some metal. The structure of your home will determine how heavy your roofing material can be, homes can handle asphalt shingles well because they don’t impose much weight on the structure of the home.
Look, Color and Texture
Shingles can come in almost any different color! This makes choosing a color for your home easy, because the colors are versatile and work well with any home. Asphalt shingles also come in a variety of different textures/styles or designs. These different textures allow them to look like different materials such as shake, slate, or tile. It can be fun choosing your shingle design because there are so many to choose from!
Asphalt shingle roofs last a long time. Most shingle roofs can have a lifespan anywhere between ten and thirty years! These roofs are easy to repair if there is ever a leak. The durability of shingle roofs make them a great choice for any new roof.
History of Shingle Roofs
The asphalt shingles that cover most homes in the United States spawned from the wooden shingle. The wood shingle or shake has been used for thousands of years throughout the world. The process of manufacturing the wood shingle traditionally was done by hand. Not until the 19th century was the process dramatically improved with the invention and use of steam-powered saw mills. Although this new advancement moved the shingle forward in being a preferred roofing material, it still wasn’t quite like the asphalt shingles we have today.
We first started to see signs of homes being covered with a type of composite roofing material in the 1840s in the New England area. These first roofs were covered with a fabric or felt type material that was later coated in a tar sand mixture. Within no time this new way of roofing began to evolve. The next step was to apply an asphalt saturated fabric or material to the roof and then apply a granulated material on top of it.
The Asphalt Shingle Takes Shape
It wasn’t until 1903 that the composite tarp like roofing product began to shrink in size. The credited father of taking the large roll roofing and cutting it into individual shingles has been given to Henry Reynolds. Henry was a professional in the industry and innovator of his day. This idea of individually cutting shingles was later pushed forward with the help of many others. One such group was the NBFU (National Board of Fire Underwriters). This board pushed to get rid of the fire hazardous wood/shake shingles. With this push to promote asphalt shingles and other factors caused by World War I and increased manufacturing capabilities the asphalt shingle began to emerge as a leading player in residential roofing materials.
The Shingle Took On Many Different Sizes, Shapes, and Designs
From 1915 to about 1930 the shingle was really in the experimental age. The original size that the first shingles were cut into went from a 8″ x 16″ to a 8″ x 12″ 1/2″ shingle. Along with the shingle size changing, so did the colors and shapes. In the beginning the most common colors for the surface material on the shingles were green and black.
The next big change in shingles was the introduction of tabs. This innovation turned the asphalt shingle into a dimensional look, much like the wood shingles that had been used for so long but the shingle didn’t stop there. By the 20s shingles really began to change shape. Many different shapes and styles were tried. Some of these were diamonds, squares, rectangles, shingles that seemed to be thatched, and so forth. It wasn’t until 1930 that the shingle began to slow down due to the Great Depression. After the Great Depression and Word War II the shingle began to evolve yet again.
The Shingles We Have Today
Comparing the asphalt shingles we have today vs those of the past reveals some major differences. Below is a basic table or list comparing our modern day asphalt shingles to their ancestors.
|The Shingle of the Past||The Modern Day Asphalt Shingle|
|Fabric Mats||Fibrous Glass Mats|
|Roll Roofing||Individually Cut Shingles|
|Black and Green Colors||Wide Array of Color Selection|
|No Tabbed Shingles||Tabbed Shingles & Architectural Shingles|
List of Shingle Manufacturers
Headquarters: 220 West 4th Street P.O. Box 1404 Joplin, MO 64802
Contact Information: 1-800-641-4691
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