Asphalt Shingles: The Alternative to Wood and Tile Shingles

by HomeAdvisor

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Years ago, most homes were built with either wood shake, slate or clay roofs. These materials were very durable and handsome when installed. Over time, roofing manufacturers developed less expensive options than these traditional roofing materials. The result was asphalt roofing shingles that sometimes detracted from a home's character and overall look.

Recently manufacturers have improved both the look and performance of asphalt shingles.

Improved Asphalt Shingles

Many manufacturers of asphalt shingles have taken great measures to improve the look of shingles, while also increasing the durability and lifespan of their products. Stronger, more natural-looking roofing materials have made asphalt roofing a good, economical choice. When looking for shingles for your roofing project, you can match the original look of your home, without having to jeopardize your children's college education savings.

Selecting Shingle Style

When selecting new roofing shingles, think of the style of your home. If your house originally had wood shingles, maybe brown asphalt shingles would work best. If you are replacing slate with asphalt shingles, you are in luck. Many manufacturers now make slate look-alike shingles that will not detract from the style of your home. Tile is a bit harder to duplicate, however, many manufacturers make clay or light brown shingles that can take the place of a costly tile roof.

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Unlike a few years ago, homeowners no longer have to settle for monotone roofing materials. Most manufacturers have designed subtle color variations, giving the new shingles a more natural look. Layering processes also add a dimensional look to the tiles, making them appear like real wood or slate.

Check out Shingle Samples

If you are having trouble deciding on the right look for your house, consult with your roofing contractor. He or she will have experience with different roofing materials and shingle styles. They can provide shingle samples in a variety of colors that you can see next to your home. Save pictures from design magazines of looks you are considering for your home. This can help your contractor visualize the style you have in mind.

Once you have decided on a shingle style and color, prepare to have the exterior of your home looking years younger in just a few days!