Asphalt roofs are a popular choice for many homeowners due to their durability and cost-effectiveness. If you’re considering a roof replacement, asphalt shingles are a great choice for many reasons. Commercial and residential properties alike trust asphalt shingles because they are a cost effective, long lasting solution.

Since 2003, AIC Roofing and Construction has been replacing roofs across Central Kentucky. If you’re considering installing an asphalt roof or already have one and want to learn more, this article will provide you with key facts you should know about asphalt roofs.

From learning about their installation process to their maintenance requirements and everything in between, we’ve got you covered (pun intended)!

Asphalt Shingles: How They’re Made

Asphalt roofs are roofing systems made from asphalt shingles. These shingles consist of a base layer of fiberglass or organic material coated with asphalt and topped with ceramic granules. The granules not only enhance the shingle’s appearance but also protect it from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays.

When it comes to roofing materials, asphalt shingles have become one of the most popular choices for homeowners. Their durability, affordability, and versatility make them an excellent option for both residential and commercial properties. But what exactly makes asphalt roofs so special?

Let’s start with the composition of asphalt shingles. The base layer of these shingles is typically made from either fiberglass or organic materials. Fiberglass shingles are lightweight and highly resistant to fire, making them a popular choice among homeowners. On the other hand, organic shingles are made from recycled felt paper and are known for their excellent insulation properties.

Once the base layer is in place, it is coated with asphalt, which acts as a waterproofing agent. This layer not only protects the shingles from moisture but also adds strength and durability to the roofing system. The final touch are the ceramic granules embedded on top of the asphalt layer. These granules give the shingles their color and texture and also provide an additional layer of protection against the sun’s harmful UV rays.

The History of Asphalt Roofs

Asphalt roofs have a rich history dating back to the early 20th century when the demand for affordable and durable roofing materials increased. The development of asphalt shingles revolutionized the roofing industry, providing homeowners with a reliable and cost-effective option.

Before the invention of asphalt shingles, roofing materials were limited to options such as wood, clay tiles, and slate. While these materials offered durability, they were often expensive and required extensive maintenance. Asphalt shingles changed the game by providing a lightweight, durable, and affordable alternative.

The first asphalt shingles were introduced in the early 1900s and quickly gained popularity among homeowners. These shingles were made from a combination of asphalt and organic materials, such as felt paper. While they were not as durable as modern asphalt shingles, they offered a significant improvement over traditional roofing materials.

Over the years, advancements in technology and manufacturing processes have led to the development of more advanced asphalt shingles. Today, homeowners can choose from a wide range of options, including architectural shingles, which offer enhanced durability and aesthetic appeal.

In addition to their affordability and durability, asphalt roofs are also known for their ease of installation. Unlike other roofing materials that require specialized skills and tools, asphalt shingles can be installed by most roofing contractors, making them a convenient choice for homeowners.

The Benefits of Asphalt Roofs

When it comes to roofing options, asphalt roofs stand out for their numerous advantages. From durability and longevity to cost-effectiveness and aesthetic appeal, asphalt shingles offer homeowners a reliable and visually appealing roofing system. Let’s explore these benefits in more detail:

Durability and Longevity

One of the primary advantages of asphalt roofs is their exceptional durability. Designed to withstand harsh weather conditions, including strong winds, heavy rain, and even hail, asphalt shingles provide reliable protection for your home. With proper installation and regular maintenance, these roofs can last for 20 to 30 years, making them a long-term investment for homeowners.

But what makes asphalt shingles so durable? It’s their composition. These shingles are made of a fiberglass mat coated with asphalt and ceramic granules. This combination creates a strong and resilient barrier against the elements. Whether it’s the scorching heat of summer or the freezing temperatures of winter, asphalt roofs can handle it all, ensuring your home remains safe and secure.


In addition to their durability, asphalt roofs are also highly cost-effective. When compared to other roofing materials like metal or tile, asphalt shingles are more affordable. This affordability factor makes asphalt roofs an attractive option for homeowners on a budget who still want a reliable and visually appealing roofing system.

Moreover, the installation costs of asphalt roofs are relatively low. The simplicity of the installation process, combined with the availability of skilled roofing contractors, makes it easier and more affordable to have an asphalt roof installed. This means that you can enjoy the benefits of a durable and long-lasting roof without breaking the bank.

Variety of Styles and Colors

Another advantage of asphalt roofs is the wide range of styles and colors they offer. Whether you prefer a traditional look or want to add a modern touch to your home, you can find asphalt shingles that complement your desired style.

Asphalt shingles come in various colors, allowing you to match your roof to the overall aesthetic of your home. Whether you prefer a vibrant and bold statement or a more subtle and understated look, there’s an asphalt shingle color that will suit your taste.

The Installation Process of Asphalt Roofs

Installing an asphalt roof requires a meticulous and systematic approach to ensure a durable and long-lasting result. The process involves several steps that are crucial for the successful installation of the roof.

Preparing for Installation

The professional installation process can typically be completed in one day! The process includes:

  • Removing the old roof: The first step is to remove the existing roof. This is done to ensure that the new asphalt roof can be installed on a clean and solid surface.
  • Inspecting the roof deck: After removing the old roof, a careful inspection of the roof deck is conducted. This is to identify any damage or weaknesses that may compromise the integrity of the new roof. Any necessary repairs or reinforcements are made at this stage.
  • Cleaning and debris removal: The roof deck must be thoroughly cleaned and free of any debris, such as leaves, dirt, or loose shingle granules. This ensures a smooth and even surface for the installation of the asphalt shingles.
  • Moisture check: Moisture can be detrimental to the performance of an asphalt roof. Therefore, it is crucial to check for any signs of moisture or water infiltration on the roof deck. If present, appropriate measures are taken to address the issue before proceeding with the installation.

The Installation Procedure

Once the preparation phase is complete, the actual installation of the asphalt roof can begin. This process involves the following steps:

  • Laying out the shingles: The asphalt shingles are carefully laid out on the roof deck, starting from the bottom edge and working upwards. This ensures that each shingle overlaps the one below it, creating a watertight barrier.
  • Securing the shingles: To secure the shingles in place, roofing nails or staples are used. These fasteners are strategically placed along the edges and in the center of each shingle, ensuring a secure attachment to the roof deck.
  • Overlapping for waterproofing: The overlapping pattern of the shingles plays a crucial role in creating a waterproof barrier. Each shingle overlaps the one below it, directing water away from the roof deck and preventing any potential leaks.

Throughout the installation process, attention to detail and precision are paramount. Proper alignment, spacing, and fastening of the shingles are crucial to ensure the roof’s integrity and longevity. Additionally, professional installers adhere to industry best practices and local building codes to ensure a high-quality installation.

Maintenance and Care for Asphalt Roofs

When it comes to maintaining the integrity of your asphalt roof, regular inspections and cleaning are crucial. These simple yet essential tasks can help prolong the lifespan of your roof and ensure its optimal performance. We recommend getting your roof inspected annually. Roof inspections are free from most roofing companies and ensure there are no leaks or issues.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Cleaning your roof is another important aspect of maintenance. Moss and algae growth can be detrimental to the overall performance and longevity of your roof. To remove these unwanted organisms, you can use a solution of water and bleach. Apply the solution to the affected areas and gently scrub the surface with a soft brush. Rinse thoroughly with clean water to remove any residue.

It’s important to note that while bleach can effectively remove moss and algae, it should be used with caution. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and take necessary safety precautions, such as wearing protective gloves and eyewear.

Dealing with Damages and Repairs

If you notice any damaged shingles or leaks during your inspection, it’s crucial to address them promptly. Ignoring minor issues can lead to more significant problems and potentially compromise the roof’s overall performance.

When it comes to repairs, it’s best to consult with a professional roofing contractor. They have the knowledge, experience, and tools to accurately assess the damage and provide the appropriate solutions. Whether it’s a simple shingle replacement or a more complex repair, a professional contractor will ensure that the job is done correctly and efficiently.

Remember, proper maintenance and care are essential for the longevity and performance of your asphalt roof. By performing regular inspections, cleaning away debris, and addressing any damages promptly, you can protect your investment and enjoy a durable and reliable roof for years to come.

Time to Replace Your Asphalt Roof?

Replacing your roof can seem like an overwhelming process. We want to help homeowners feel confident and make informed decisions throughout this process. From what questions to ask a roofing contractor, to evaluating and comparing your roofing estimates, you can find help for every step of the process by visiting our Learning Center and YouTube channel.

You never want to trade speed for craftsmanship. With AIC Roofing, you won’t have to. We are part of the elite 2% of roofers in North America to hold the GAF MasterElite Certification. AIC Roofing and Construction has been serving the Central Kentucky area since 2003. We’re proud of the stellar reputation we’ve earned from helping homeowners.

If the time has come to replace your roof, we’d love to see if we would be a good fit for your home project. Contact us today to schedule your free estimate!

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