When you think about environmentally friendly materials, which roofing material comes to mind? Chances are, the asphalt shingle roofing system won’t even make the list. The thing is, asphalt is the by-product of the refining of crude oil and, therefore, not the most earth-conscious or sustainable roofing material on the market.
However, if you plan on replacing your asphalt shingle roofing system, you don’t have to worry about the old shingles ending up in a landfill. That is because, thanks to technological advances, asphalt shingles are now recyclable.
According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, about 11 million tons of asphalt shingle waste is produced every year. Ten million pounds is due to homeowners alone as a result of their tear-off roofing process. The remaining million pounds of waste are created during the manufacturing of asphalt shingles.
When recycling asphalt shingles, it is usually easier and cheaper to recycle the manufacturer’s waste. This is because this asphalt is a little cleaner and hasn’t been mixed with fiberglass, felt paper, cotton, etc. However, just because it’s easier doesn’t mean that it’s impossible or there isn’t a market for it.
According to Todd Genovese of Lafarge North America, even “clean” shingles aren’t always cleaned and often have to go through a cleaning process, much like the shingles that have been torn off residential homes. He mentions that being quite a distance from a shingle manufacturer is a contributing factor in using residential asphalt tear-offs.
Todd Genovese of Lafarge North America says that even “clean” shingles aren’t always perfectly cleaned and often require an additional cleaning process. He mentions that being some distance from asphalt manufacturing plants is one of the main reasons residential asphalt tear-offs are used.
Recycled asphalt shingles are a popular material used to create roadworks, pavements, and other roofing materials. In the US, the market for recycled asphalt shingles is increasing as more and more states use the material to build roads or improve their road networking systems. Parking lot and driveway developments are also increasingly making use of the material.
The local government of Minnesota has incorporated asphalt waste into constructing the state’s bicycle and hiking trails. In Georgia, it has been declared that all roadworks need to consist of at least 5% asphalt waste.
Making use of recycled asphalt shingles has saved industries like road and transportation and the building industry significantly. Their costs have been reduced as well as their carbon output. Asphalt shingles may have a slightly bad rap for being a little less eco-friendly than other roofing materials, but at least now, you can rest assured that your residential tear-off is put to good use.
Are you considering replacing your asphalt shingle roof and want to know how to dispose of your tear-off shingles safely? Give Integrity Pro Roofing a call today, and we’ll assist you with all your roofing needs.