Hicksville Roofing: Article About Recycled Asphalt Shingles
As a homeowner facing a roof replacement of asphalt shingles, you may be curious as to what happens to those shingles once they're thrown in the Dumpster and hauled away. Turns out, asphalt shingles are perfect candidates for recycling, particular important in an age when landfills are pushed to the max and tipping fees are on the rise.
When recycled, asphalt shingles are given a new life as pothole patches, road covers, asphalt pavement, aggregate bases and subbases, fuel oil and even new roofing. They can also be used for cold patching involving anything from driveways, ramps and sidewalks to bridges, parking lots and potholes. Concerned about the environment? Ask your Hicksville roofing contractors if they recycle their shingle waste. In general, it's a lot cheaper to send your old shingles to a recycle company that specializes in this type of thing than it is to send them to the landfill. As a homeowner or roofer, you're charged less by these companies because they're making lots of money on the other end reselling those materials for the highly-sought-after asphalt.
The amount of waste generated by asphalt shingles every single year in this country is staggering. A whopping 11 million tons of waste are created from asphalt roofing shingle scraps alone. Much of this waste involves tear-offs from re-roofing projects or debris from demolition sites. Because asphalt roofs only last about 20 years, many homeowners tend to have new shingles simply layered on top of the old ones to save money.
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What results the next time is a tear-off comprising 40-year layers of old shingles. Although a significant portion of shingle waste comes from the construction industry, it's also generated from old or unusable shingles that are involved in natural disasters like hurricanes and floods. Three tons of roofing materials are discarded during an average re-roof construction project, with each ton equal to one barrel of oil that can find a new life as asphalt for roads and parking lots. Asphalt companies simply heat up the recycled material and mix it into new road asphalt.
Special equipment is necessary to grind the old shingles into recyclable material, such as hammermills. When ground into a fine consistency, the material can be used as a protective layer underneath asphalt roadways, acting as aggregate to improve on performance as well as cut back on cost. Asphalt from old shingles has been found to improve roadway performance in regards to better compaction and stability of the finished product. The surface also becomes less susceptible to extreme temperature fluctuations, with an added benefit of becoming resistant to rutting. Many states throughout the country have approved the use of recycled asphalt for its road mixes.
As long as there are asphalt shingles, there will be the potential for recycling solutions that can benefit other aspects of our daily lives.