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Toledo Roofers: Article About Recycled Shingles

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Many homeowners think a lot about using their roofs to save money and the environment, whether it's by installing solar systems or employing cool roof products. Often, less consideration is given to the environmental impact of the entire roofing process, from the waste produced by manufacturing to the tons of torn off roof materials that get thrown into landfills during roofing replacements.

Each year, roof replacement projects involve tearing off 20 billion pounds of potentially recyclable shingles, yet 7 to 10 million tons of that waste is tossed into American landfills. An additional 750,000 to 1 million tons of asphalt waste is created during shingle manufacturing. Considering that 80 percent of homeowners choose asphalt shingles for their home roofing systems, there's ample opportunity to reduce this waste through recycling.

Luckily, there are a few forward thinking, experienced Toledo roofers who limit the environmentally damaging effects of roofing. These trusted roofers can guide consumers in choosing products that are more eco friendly, including efficient underlayment and quality shingle systems.

Consumers can find these roofers by checking their manufacturer certifications. Owens Corning, GAF and CertainTeed list local roofers with expertise in roof recycling.

The roofing contractors from Johnson Construction of Toledo would be happy to answer any question you have about residential roofing or siding.

Shingles are ideal for recycling because about 40 percent of a typical roof shingle is made of petroleum based asphalt, an expensive and limited resource. Recycling makes good use of this valuable resource, giving shingles new life as road pavement, new roofing material and a host of other useful construction and home products. Recycling the asphalt also saves money in a fluctuating oil market.

The recycling process is fairly simple. Once old shingles are torn off a roof, the roofer transports them to a specialized recycling center where the asphalt portion of the shingle is separated from its felt or fiberglass base. Remaining nails are removed by a rotating magnet, and asphalt is ground into small pebbles. Those small pebbles are then available for paving, roofing and construction factories to use in their own manufacturing process. Most shingles end up in hot mix asphalt used to pave roads, cold patch mix to fill potholes and aggregate used in roadway base, cement pads and foundations.

Homeowners can also reduce roof waste by choosing shingles made by companies dedicated to reducing manufacturing waste. Owens Corning recycled 2.4 billion pounds of shingles in one year and operates a nationwide asphalt shingle recycling program. One GAF factory diverts 94 percent of its waste from landfills through re-designed manufacturing processes, and CertainTeed diverts 24 million pounds of waste from landfills at one site alone.

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