What Happens To Extra Shingles – Ask Your Contractor

December 11th, 2012

This is a guest post contributed by American Custom Contractors, a roofing company in Maryland.

America churns out 12.5 billion square feet of asphalt shingles every year—that’s enough to shingle all of Washington D.C. almost five times! Unfortunately for the environment and for pocketbooks everywhere, about 11 million tons of those shingles end up being wasted and tossed into landfills annually. That’s the equivalent of about 11 million barrels of oil! Currently, only about a third of these waste shingles enter into any kind of recycling program, which means the other two thirds of these high-petroleum content shingles are simply wasting away, leaking toxins into the environment and wasting money to no good purpose.



The good news is that there are viable alternatives. First of all, waste shingles can be recycled. Currently, most of the extra shingles that do end up being recycled go into paving and road repair projects. Second, there are greener and greener roofing options on the market today than ever before.

It’s possible to get very durable, good-looking shingles that are made of recycled materials in the first place. Slate, clay and metal roofing options are also available. While these options are often more expensive than conventional asphalt shingles, they tend to last much longer as well.

If you decide to stick with traditional asphalt roofing, make sure your roofing contractor has a specific plan for any shingle leftovers. A good roofer will measure carefully before starting so that there is as little waste as possible in the first place.



They will also provide a specific plan for any extras, like donating them to charities such as Habitat for Humanity, or putting them into a specific recycling program. This way you know that you are getting the best deal for your money while also helping the environment and your community.

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