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asphalt roofing shingles

Asphalt Roof Shingles: Pros and Cons 2023

Asphalt roof shingles are one of the most popular roofing materials for homes across the United States. However, other roofing materials have surged in popularity in recent years, leaving a lot of people wondering if shingle roofs are right for their homes.

We’ve been installing all kinds of residential roofs in Florida for 20 years, so we know all the pros and cons of asphalt roof shingles. Keep reading for all the information you need to make an informed choice about your roof.

What Are Asphalt Roof Shingles Made Of?

What Are Asphalt Roof Shingles Made Of

Asphalt roof shingles are an American invention created by Henry Reynolds in 1903 and first used in Grand Rapids, Michigan. And while they’ve always been a popular roofing option, today’s asphalt shingles bear little resemblance to what Americans were using on their homes a century ago.

Originally, all forms of shingle roofing materials had an organic base made of a material called felt, which was mostly cotton. This base was then mixed with asphalt to offer protection from water and physical damage like storm debris. This lasted until the 1920s, when cotton became too expensive due to the Great Depression, and manufacturers tried alternative materials like wood pulp. 


Nowadays, some asphalt roof shingles have an organic base made of wood or another fibrous material. But most modern asphalt shingles are usually made with a fiberglass base, which provides for better water-proofing as well as fire resistance. 

And when it comes to styles of asphalt shingles, the sky is the limit. They come in a variety of colors, shapes, styles, and thicknesses, so it’s possible to achieve nearly any vision with the right type of shingle. 

The Pros of Asphalt Roofing Shingles

Now that you know the history of asphalt roof shingles, let’s look at some of the biggest pros and cons of choosing shingles for your new roof.

  • Affordable Cost: Asphalt roof shingles are installed on over 70 percent of all homes in the US, and the cost of shingles is a big factor in that. When you need a new roof in Florida, shingles are a simple, budget-friendly option.
  • Different Styles of Shingles: While asphalt roof shingles are affordable options, that doesn’t mean you have to settle for shingles you don’t love. Asphalt roofing manufacturers provide a wide variety of colors, styles, and thicknesses, so you will be able to find asphalt shingles that work for you.
  • Improved Curb Appeal: If you plan on reselling your home, you want it to appeal to potential buyers, and asphalt shingles are a great option for improving curb appeal. If you want to increase the curb appeal of your home by using shingles, try to get shingles that create a similar look to the homes of your neighbors. This kind of cohesion can go a long way in attracting potential buyers to your property.
  • Quick Installation: For a professional roofer in Florida, installing asphalt roof shingles can go pretty quickly. So if you want a job done quickly, shingles are a great option. This is also another reason that shingles are affordable—lower labor costs can quickly lower your roofing bill.
  • Easy Shingle Repairs: If there’s a leak or damage, replacing a few shingles can keep your home safe from the elements. When you need a roof repair, calling an experienced contractor to fix your shingle roof isn’t likely to break the bank. And by getting repairs done proactively, you can avoid having to pay for a roof replacement.
  • Cool Roof Status: On average, cool roofs save homeowners between seven and 15 percent on their total cooling costs. These roofs function by reflecting UV rays and heat away from the home, resulting in an overall cooling effect. And while not all asphalt roof shingles are cool roofs, at Classic Roofing & Construction, we can provide shingles that meet this qualification. Our team of certified Florida roofers provides Timberline CS Shingles to Florida property owners, which can substantially reduce their energy bills and save them money.

While asphalt shingles are a great roofing option for Floridians, they’re not perfect. Let’s look at some cons of asphalt roof shingles.

The Cons of Asphalt Shingle Roofing

While this roofing material has some great advantages, the drawback to asphalt roof shingles include:

  • Non-recyclable: Asphalt roof shingles can be recycled, but this is not the norm due to the slow process and high costs. This means that most asphalt shingles will end up in a landfill, which could be a drawback if you want an eco-friendly roofing material.
  • Shorter Life of Your Roof: It’s important to know that asphalt shingles often have a long life—sometimes beyond 20 years. But this is substantially shorter than other roofing materials, like metal roofs, which can last up to 50 years.
  • Vulnerable to Wind Damage: If you live in St. Petersburg, Tampa, Clearwater, or Fort Myers, you already know that we can experience extreme weather. And shingles are more vulnerable to wind damage than some other roofing materials, so they can be less appealing for hurricane-proofing your home. But when our GAF Master Elite-certified contractors install your asphalt roof shingles, our certification will allow us to offer you strong warranties like a 15-year limited wind warranty with no maximum wind speed limitation. 

Choosing the Right Shingles Manufacturer Is Crucial

Choosing the Right Shingles Manufacturer Is Crucial

When clients of Classic Roofing choose asphalt shingles for their preferred roofing material, we recommend the GAF Timberline Shingles. For more than a century, GAF shingles have set the gold standard for both performance and price. As proof of that, the Timberline Shingles are top-selling asphalt shingles in the United States. And it’s not just roofers who have great things to say about these asphalt roof shingles.

According to a survey of 380 real estate agents and certified appraisers of single-family homes, upgrading a roof with GAF Timberline Shingles can increase the resale value of a home by an average of 10 percent. And with a variety of different types of asphalt shingles, GAF provides the perfect shingles for any home.

But getting the best asphalt shingles for your roof requires more than just picking the right manufacturer. GAF only sells its top-of-the-line products to roofing contractors that they can trust to do the job right. That’s why we’re proud to be GAF-certified, something that only two percent of roofing companies in the US can say. This means we get the best products and the best warranties for all of our projects using asphalt roof shingles.

Choose Florida Roofers Who Know Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt roof shingles are a great material for a lot of homeowners. They have their drawbacks, but their many pros make them a popular option for homeowners in the Greater Tampa Bay region. And once you’ve decided to go with asphalt shingles, the only thing left to do is choose a local roofer who can handle your project.

At Classic, we bring decades of experience to every job. And unlike other local Florida roofers, we never use subcontractors, so you can trust that our team is experienced, licensed, and insured. We’re so confident in our work, in fact, that we even offer a 100% happiness guarantee.


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