There are several reasons why asphalt shingles are the most popular roofing material in the US. (In particular, asphalt shingles make up roughly 80% of all residential roofs in North America.) They’re lightweight, durable, cost-effective, and widely available. If you need a roof replacement, asphalt shingles would be a smart choice.
Your Professional Roofer elaborates on the advantages of asphalt shingles below:
Your roof serves as your home’s first line of defense against the elements. That’s why it’s important to choose a roofing material that’s tough enough to handle the rain, snow, and UV rays. Asphalt shingles are durable enough to withstand hot and cold climates. They’re also resistant to ultraviolet rays (which can slowly break down your roof), thanks to the UV-resistant granules embedded into their surface.
Important note: the quality of the asphalt shingles can affect the durability of your roof replacement. If quality shingles were used, an asphalt roof can last up to 30 years.
Here’s a tip: the asphalt content of asphalt shingles can affect their estimated lifespan. In general, light asphalt shingles contain less asphalt than heavier shingles.
Ease of Installation
Lightweight asphalt shingles are easy to install. In general, the lighter the roofing material, the easier and faster it is to install them.
Low Maintenance Needs
Compared to other roofing materials, asphalt shingles have relatively lower maintenance needs. Keep in mind that low maintenance doesn’t mean “no” maintenance. Even a low-maintenance asphalt roof needs to be inspected and maintained from time to time.
How often should you have your roof inspected? As a general rule, residential roofs should be inspected at least twice a year, ideally in spring and fall. As for commercial roofing systems, they need to be inspected more frequently. Thanks to their low slopes (which cause water to pond on the roof’s surface), commercial roofs are more leak-prone.
It’s also highly recommended that you schedule a roof inspection after an extreme weather event. No matter how durable your roof is, it’s likely to have suffered some form of damage after a storm.
What if there are no signs of roof damage? It would still be a good idea to have your roof inspected. That’s because it takes time for certain forms of damage to emerge. And by the time they emerge, it’s likely too late to mitigate storm damage. Remember: the sooner roofing issues are detected and the roof repair is finished, the better.
Since asphalt shingles are widely available, you won’t have trouble finding replacement shingles in the event your roof is damaged.
Maximizing Your Return on Investment
In addition to doing your research on the basics (like the roofing materials suited to the local climate), here are some of the ways to maximize the return on your investment:
Use Quality Roofing Materials
In general, it’s best to stick to reputable brands. That’s because using substandard or off-brand shingles always ends up costing homeowners more in the end.
Choosing a Shingle Color that Complements Your Exterior
Your roof forms a large part of your home’s curb appeal. To keep it intact or enhance it, it’s important to choose a shingle color that complements the rest of your exterior.
Here are some tips on choosing a color that complements the rest of your exterior:
- Use classic color combinations – There’s a reason why certain color combinations have withstood the test of time. For instance, if you have a red exterior, you can try choosing dark, brown, grey or green accents for your roof. And if you have a light grey exterior, we would recommend choosing black, green, blue, or white. What about white? The best thing about white is that it goes well with almost every color.
- Identify your home’s architectural style – To further narrow down your options, find out which color combinations have been traditionally used in your home’s architectural style.
- Stick to neutral colors – There’s nothing wrong with choosing trendy colors that can help draw more attention to your exterior. The problem is they tend to go out of style quickly. That’s why when in doubt, it’s best to stick to neutral colors that never go out of style.
Important note: Coordinating colors can be tricky. If you’re having trouble choosing a color for your new roof, don’t hesitate to consult a residential and commercial roofing contractor.
Roof Colors and Energy Efficiency
Aside from design consistency, another thing you should consider when choosing roof colors is energy efficiency. The closer a color is to white on the color spectrum, the more heat it reflects, and the less electricity your HVAC system has to consume to keep indoor temperatures at a comfortable level. And the darker a shade is, the more heat it absorbs, and the higher your cooling costs. If you want to lower your cooling costs this summer, we recommend choosing a light roof color.
Avoid Getting Too Preoccupied With the Costs
While it’s important to stay within your budget, it’s important to not get too preoccupied with the costs. Focus instead on how you can maximize your return on investment.
Hiring a Qualified Roofer
The same goes for hiring roofers: while it’s tempting to choose the roofer with the lowest bid, it’s still important to vet prospective roofers. This will make sure they’re qualified for the job.
Here are some vetting tips:
- Limit your search to contractors near you – To quickly narrow down your options, focus your search on contractors near you. Hiring local also has other advantages. For instance, since local contractors are more familiar with the local climate and building codes, they can make better recommendations.
- Go through their online reviews – Online reviews can give you an idea of the level of service you can expect from contractors. Keep in mind that a few negative reviews aren’t necessarily a red flag. After all, miscommunication sometimes happens. In these cases, what you should focus on is the contractor’s response to the complaints. Did they take the time to post a response? And if so, was it done in a professional manner?
- Ask how long they’ve been in business – The number of years a contractor has been working in the industry should give you a good idea of their level of expertise.
- Check their qualifications – The minimum qualifications for contractors vary from state to state. Contractors should have worker’s compensation and general liability insurance (to protect you from legal liabilities in case workplace accidents happen on your property). As for roofing licenses, the state of Missouri doesn’t require roofing contractors to have a state license, but requirements may vary at the local level.
- Check their certifications – Certifications are proof contractors have passed stringent vetting processes by manufacturers and independent non-profits.
What Does a Rating with the Better Business Bureau® Mean?
The Better Business Bureau® (BBB) is an independent non-profit aiming to achieve its goal of advancing marketplace trust by assigning ratings to companies. The ratings (ranging from F to A+) gives you an idea of the quality of service you can expect from a company.
The A+ Rating: The Gold Standard
What would it take for a company to receive an A+ rating? A company would need to receive a total score of 97 out of 100, which requires a near-perfect score in all 13 categories used to calculate ratings. (The number of complaints received by the BBB about the contractor and the extent of a contractor’s experience is some of these factors.) As such, if you’re working with a contractor with an A+ rating from the BBB, you can rest knowing that your shingle roof will be installed correctly.
Your Professional Roofer, a company with an A+ rating with the BBB, offers a wide range of professional exterior services, including roof repair and replacement services. To request an estimate, call us at (636) 866-5660 or fill out this form.