One of the most common questions asked of New Jersey roofing contractors is how long an asphalt roof should last. This is because the majority of roofs in New Jersey are constructed using asphalt shingles. The fact is that how long your asphalt roof lasts will depend on many factors.
Three-Tab Asphalt Shingles
Being the budget-friendly option, three-tab asphalt shingles, which are the most commonly used in home construction, should last between 12 and 25 years, with most manufacturers offering a 25-year warranty. A three-tab shingle is recognizable by the three uniform cuts, or tabs, on the lower edge of each shingle. When installed, each shingle looks like three separate pieces although it is just one solid piece. Three-tab shingles are less expensive than other types of shingles and provide a uniform look on your roof. Three-tab shingles are the least expensive type of asphalt roofing, but they may not have as long of a lifespan as other types of shingles.
Also known as architectural shingles, dimensional shingles are created by bonding two layers of material together so that they give your roof a 3D look as opposed to a flattering style with three-tab shingles. Roofing companies in South Jersey say that these shingles gained popularity in the 1970s when homeowners wanted the look of wood shingles without maintenance. Today, it is possible to find dimensional shingles in styles like Victorian, rugged and dramatic. Most architectural shingles will last between 25 and 30 years, although there have been instances where they have lasted more than 40 years. However, most have a 30-year warranty. They are slightly more expensive than three-tab shingles and they do require a little more maintenance as mildew or algae could build up in the notches. However, all asphalt shingles must be checked for mildew and algae as they are all susceptible to growth.
Luxury asphalt shingles, according to New Jersey roofing contractors are thicker than both three-tab and dimensional shingles. They are designed to look like slate tile but are far less heavy which means you do not need to reinforce your walls when you install them. The cost is much higher than both architectural and three-tab shingles, sometimes as much as twice the cost. Most luxury shingles have warranties between 30 and 40 years, although the average lifespan is around 30 years. However, in some cases, manufacturers offer warranties as high as 50 years if you have also installed other components made by the same manufacturer and have them installed by a qualified contractor.
Ventilation in Your Attic
The type of shingle is not the only factor that can impact the lifespan of your roof. The ventilation in your attic will have a tremendous impact on the life of your roof. If hot or cold air is trapped in your attic, your shingles could be damaged, and this will greatly shorten their lifespan. In addition, if you do not have proper ventilation in your attic and your shingles fail too quickly, your warranty could be voided by the manufacturer.
Roofing companies in South Jersey also warn that proper maintenance must be performed on your roof in order to maintain your warranty. Tree branches, leaves or other debris left on your roof can lead to damaged shingles. This is because the shingles could become saturated, and they are then unable to keep moisture out of your home. Always clean debris from your roof as quickly as possible, especially in the valleys of your roof. Another way to keep your asphalt shingles working properly is to clean your gutters several times each year. If you allow debris to build up in your gutters, New Jersey roofing contractors say that ice dams could form during colder months. These can lead to damage to the underlayment of your roof and cause leaks.
The one thing you cannot control that impacts your roof is the weather, roofing companies in South Jersey say. Thunderstorms, hurricanes, snowstorms, and hail are all common in New Jersey and all of these can shorten the lifespan of your asphalt shingles. The more extreme weather your roof sees, the more your shingles may weaken. Also, keep in mind that direct sunshine can also damage your shingles. The sun’s UV rays can cause them to crack, chip and break. The way your roof faces can also have an impact on its lifespan. A roof that faces east and west will have equal amounts of direct sunshine. However, if your home faces north or south, one side will have more exposure to the sun than the other.
Quality of Installation
When you have an asphalt shingle roof installed, you want to be sure to choose a contractor with extensive experience. The best way to do that is to choose a contractor that is GAF Master Elite Certified, something that less than 30 percent of all roofing companies in the country can claim. RGB Construction holds that certification which means our technicians are highly trained and will only use the highest quality material available on your roof.
If you are considering a new roof or have noticed problems with your roof, contact RGB Construction today to schedule a no-obligation consultation. We will walk you through the process and help you choose the perfect roofing materials for your needs. Fill out the easy online form or give us a call at 856-264-9093.