Asphalt shingles are the most common type of material used in Winnipeg homes and even across entire America. The main reason for this is affordability—asphalt shingles are by far the cheapest option in the roofing market right now, making them a financially comfortable pick for the majority of house owners.
This goes without saying that the main selling point of asphalt shingles is their price, but they wouldn’t be as popular if it wasn’t for their cost-effectiveness as well. Asphalt shingles get a lot of flak for being relatively cheap and low-quality, but times are changing and asphalt roof manufacturers are continuing to innovate for more effective asphalt-based products.
Asphalt shingles can be made from either an organic base or a fiberglass base. They have their differences but are made in a similar manner. Both are soaked in asphalt and covered in granules for UV protection.
Organic-based asphalt shingles
Organic shingles are typically composed of condensed wood, felt, or paper. These organic compounds are then saturated with a thick layer asphalt and are coated with granules to help prevent algae growth, UV penetration, and discoloration. They work well in low-humidity environments and can adapt to harsh winters. In addition, organic shingles also contain more asphalt than fiberglass, making them more durable.
But compared to fiberglass, organic shingles are less commonly used for a couple of reasons. One, they tend to absorb moisture which leads to rotting and water damage. Two, they are a tad bit denser in weight, making them more difficult to work with. Last, they are more prone to fire damage than fiberglass.
Fiberglass asphalt shingles
Fiberglass shingles are your classic asphalt shingles. They are the ones you commonly see when you drive around the neighborhood. Fiberglass shingles are made of reinforced plastic embedded in resin, and overall mix that allows fiberglass shingles to handle moisture very well. This makes them perfect for humid, heavy-rainfall environments. But on the flip side, they can stiffen up and become brittle when exposed to cold climates.
Because they are not as heavy as their organic counterparts, fiberglass shingles are typically less durable.
Asphalt shingles generally come in two types:
- 3-tab shingles
- Architectural roof shingles
Both are relatively cheap compared to other roofing materials and are available in either organic or fiberglass base. Let’s dive in on the details for each.
3 Tab asphalt shingles
Imagine a shingle mat cut evenly into three smaller, rectangular shingles—what you’ll get is the 3-tab shingle.
These are lightweight and cost typically less than architectural shingles. They are also thinner, making them less durable and more prone to blow-off than their architectural counterparts. On average, 3-tab shingles last for 15-20 years before becoming eligible for a replacement.
Newer houses typically utilize architectural shingles, but you can still find 3-tab shingle roofs on mass housings or old houses.
The appeal of architectural shingles lies in their asymmetry. You get an assortment of sizes and colors with architectural shingles which adds depth and texture to your roof, making them look more attractive and rustic.
Architectural shingles are more durable than 3-tab shingles, and this is all thanks to a lamination process that binds two shingles together. The more durable and weighty the shingles are, the more resistant they are to wind. If you live in an area with high winds, architectural shingles are simply the superior option.
With architectural shingles, you can also mimic the look of high-quality roofing materials such as cedar and slate without dealing with the hassles these materials bring. Cedar and slate tend to be heavy, making them difficult to install. But with architectural shingles, this would not be a problem at all.
Pros of asphalt shingles
There’s a reason why asphalt shingles have remained a popular pick for years among homeowners; below are some of the reasons why.
If you’re smart about the type of asphalt shingles you choose, you’ll definitely get more bang for your buck. You get to pay an affordable price upfront while reaping the benefits of quality roofing.
Architectural shingles provide you with an array of aesthetic options—from antique wooden shakes down to modern slates.
Cons of asphalt shingles
When dealing with economical products, you have to be fully aware of their drawbacks as well.
Prone to blow-off
Any type of asphalt shingles are relatively lightweight compared to other materials, making them prone to being blown off by high winds.
Asphalt shingles are not your permanent go-to roofings. But if that’s not what you’re worried about, then this wouldn’t be a problem at all.