A Guide to Asphalt Shingle Roofing

What is asphalt roofing

Your roof is perhaps one of the most important elements to consider when you’re looking to make your home safe and functional. It’s your roof that keeps your family safe and dry, ensures your comfort, and of course, contributes significantly to the overall looks of your house’s exterior. In Maine, where weather can be as unpredictable as it’s harsh, your house exterior should be built to withstand the elements.

Fortunately, Horch Roofing offers a variety of materials and makes it easy to find a reliable and durable solution to suit your needs.  Each material comes with its own set of benefits, tailored to meet different needs and preferences. Among various material options, asphalt roof shingles stand out for their excellent balance of aesthetics, affordability, and high performance. All of this makes them a very popular choice not just locally, but across the nation and beyond.

If this material is new to you, read on. Below, we’ll explore the concept of asphalt shingle roofing in detail, hoping to help you decide whether it’s the right one for you.

What is asphalt roofing?

Initially introduced in the early 20th century, this type of material quickly gained popularity due to its affordable cost and many other benefits that asphalt shingles come with. Of course, the material has been refined and improved over the years. Today, it’s considered a staple in the construction industry, and one of the most popular roofing options for homeowners and contractors alike.

Asphalt shingles have evolved from simple, flat strips to the sophisticated, multi-dimensional designs we see today. But what is asphalt roofing exactly? They are easy-to-install, light but robust panels, made from several layers. One tile typically features a fiberglass mat, asphalt coating, and ceramic granules. The fiberglass mat is the foundation that provides strength and stability, the coating serves as the primary waterproofing component, and the ceramic granules offer UV protection, durability, and a range of color options.

As you can see, today’s asphalt shingles are a far cry from their humble beginnings. They now look better and offer stronger protection against the elements.

What are the types of asphalt roof shingles?

This material is suitable for a lot of homeowners with different needs and preferences. It can also easily fit in with various architectural styles. With such versatility, you are sure to find the option that suits you, no matter the situation. Here are some of the most widely known types of asphalt shingles:

1. Three-tab

Affordable and simple, three-tab shingles were once the go-to choice for many. They are defined by their single layer and uniform cutouts, and they create a flat, consistent look on the roof. However, as more advanced options have emerged, this solution was pushed to the side in their favor. Their relatively shorter lifespan and simple looks now make them less desirable when compared to other, more modern alternatives.

2. Architectural type

When compared to the three-tab option, architectural shingles offer a lot more in terms of durability and visual appeal. These tiles are made with multiple layers of material, and are noticeably more resilient, with longer lifespans. Their appearance is more textured and layered, and because of this – often preferred among homeowners. They can even mimic the look of natural materials like wood or slate. With this option, you could have a luxurious appearance without the associated cost and maintenance.

3. Designer type

Manufacturers also offer heavier, high-end, luxury, or designer options. These solutions might be slightly more expensive, but they are on another level when it comes to durability and resilience. They are engineered to withstand extreme weather, which makes them an ideal choice for homeowners in the area. Same as architectural types, they also come in a variety of styles. There are even materials that mimic other high-end materials, so homeowners can get a solution that looks like the more luxurious one at a reduced price. 

How long do asphalt shingle roofs last?

Durability is one of the key characteristics of quality roofing. Asphalt shingles are designed to last for years and be resistant. However, several factors can influence the actual lifespan.

Average lifespan

For an asphalt shingle roof, the lifespan typically ranges from 17 to 25 years. Still, not all options are created equal, and some may last longer or shorter than others. High-performance types are carefully engineered to be as durable as possible, so if you’re looking for a solution with an extended lifespan, this may be the ideal option for you. Still, it’s important to note that the choice of tiles is not the only influencing factor.

Influencing factors

As explained, the longevity of a roof doesn’t solely depend on the material or type you choose. External factors play an important role here too. This includes local climate, exposure to direct sunlight, and of course, the quality of the roofing installation process. What’s more, if you want your system to last longer, you’ll need to maintain it properly and rely on professionals like Horch Roofing to repair any issues that appear as soon as possible.


Regular and proper maintenance of an asphalt shingle roof is essential if you want to make sure your tiles reach their expected lifespan. Don’t forget to schedule regular inspections, even if there are no apparent issues with your system. Remember, professional inspections are how you catch and address minor and potentially hard-to-notice issues before they escalate into major ones. You should also routinely clean the gutters, remove debris, and check for signs of wear and tear. This devoted approach to maintenance can have a more significant effect on durability than you may expect.

asphalt shingle roofing

Who should I reach out to if I want to install an asphalt shingle roof?

At Horch Roofing, we specialize in asphalt shingle roofing installations from our offices in South Portland, Warren, and across Coastal Maine. With 20+ years of experience and a team of qualified professionals, we provide top-notch services and durable roofing solutions. Aside from asphalt shingles, count on us for standing-seam metal and EPDM rubber systems, seamless gutter installation, and maintenance and repair services. Contact us today to discuss your roofing needs!