Asphalt shingles are by far the most popular residential roofing material in the United States, and industry surveys have shown that they’re the primary source of revenue for over 80 percent of roofing contractors.
It is easy to understand why. Asphalt shingles are versatile, low-maintenance, easy to install, and relatively inexpensive. What about asphalt shingles for businesses, though? Is America’s favorite roofing material a viable option for commercial buildings, too?
What Are Asphalt Shingles?
Asphalt shingles consist of three main components — a fiberglass mat, the asphalt that surrounds it on both sides to create a waterproof roofing solution, and stone granules that increase the roof’s lifespan while contributing aesthetic value. They are designed to overlap to provide a watertight seal.
The three main types of asphalt shingles you’ll see on residential buildings everywhere are:
- Three-tab shingles, also called strip shingles. This most basic type of shingle is cost-effective and relatively plain.
- Dimensional shingles, also called architectural shingles, are thicker and consist of multiple layers. They are more aesthetically appealing and often designed to mimic the look of slate shingles.
- Luxury shingles are the most advanced type of asphalt shingles, designed for high-end residential applications.
Asphalt shingles are designed to shed water on sloped roofs, which also offer protection against wind uplift. However, modified asphalt shingles are becoming increasingly popular as commercial roofing materials, especially for buildings with steeper or low-sloped roofs.
When Are Asphalt Shingles an Option for Commercial Buildings?
Asphalt shingles can be a fantastic option for businesses, so long as the roofing system is designed for commercial applications. In contrast to residential asphalt shingles, commercial shingle roofing usually:
- Features reinforcement to enhance the durability of asphalt shingles in commercial settings.
- Needs to be installed by a trusted, experienced roofing contractor.
- Requires specialized underlayment to ensure the roof can drain water as needed.
Having said that, commercial asphalt shingles are a viable option for numerous businesses — and more could benefit from considering this roofing solution. Although asphalt shingles may not be suitable for flat commercial roofs, businesses in buildings with steeper or low-sloped roofs enjoy the same advantages as homeowners when they opt for modified asphalt shingles designed for commercial use.
Asphalt shingles for businesses are economical, easy to install, versatile, and relatively low-maintenance compared to commercial roofing solutions such as modified bitumen, BUR, or single-ply membranes. They are also durable, with high-end options having an expected lifespan of as much as 50 years. The other upside? Commercial asphalt shingles can add curb appeal, as they are available in various different styles and colors — in contrast to the utilitarian commercial roofs we’re all familiar with.
Ready to Explore Your Ideal Commercial Roofing Solution?
Do you hope to add aesthetic value and gain a durable, low-maintenance commercial roof that can serve your business well for decades? Commercial asphalt shingles may be your best option.
The Roof Mentors have been helping homeowners put good roofs over their heads for years. Our experienced roofers would be delighted to assess your commercial building to explore whether commercial asphalt shingles are a viable solution for your business.
Ready to take the plunge? Our 24/7 call center is ready to plan a full roof inspection around your calendar. You’ll get a free quote to boot!