Recycling Asphalt Roof Shingles

By Robert Robillard on Uncategorized

Recycling Roof Shingles

Asphalt shingles are the most widely used roofing products in the United States.   The most likely reason for this is availability, ease of install, durability and cost.
Anyone who has ever worked with asphalt roof shingles knows that its a bear to dispose of them.   They are heavy, bulky and this non-biodegradable solid waste takes up a ton of space in landfills.

Lifespan of Asphalt Roof Shingles

Asphalt roofs generally last from 12 to 20 years and then require replacement or recovering.   Re roofing generates an estimated 6.8 million tons of waste asphalt shingles each year so its time that we start thinking about recycling asphalt roof shingles .

Asphalt Roof Shingles and Landfills

Millions of tons of roofing materials are sent to the landfill each year. A common roadblock for many contractors to increasing recycling efforts is a lack of recycling programs and technical reuse limitations.

Owens Corning Recycling of Asphalt Roof Shingles

Recognizing the opportunity to provide a more sustainable end-of-life solution for asphalt shingles, Owens Corning’s Roofing business has done a nice job developing an innovative program to simplify shingle recycling for their preferred roofing contractors.

Through the program, Owens Corning connects roofing contractors with convenient drop-offs and recycling centers run by Heritage Environmental Services.  Heritage, the largest privately-held environmental services company in the US, will provide dedicated, convenient drop-off centers that will recycle and process shingle tear-offs for the materials to be used in paving.

Owens Corning is taking a proactive step toward removing barriers to keeping recyclable waste from going to landfills. Although they only offer this program to their “preferred contractors” it’s still a start in the right direction.

The shingles contain 40 percent asphalt, according to the Construction Materials Recycling Association (CMRA) making it an attractive substitute for virgin asphalt. The National Asphalt Paving Association estimates that using 5 percent recycled shingle byproduct can save between $1 and $2.80 per ton of hot-mix asphalt.

Alternatives to Disposal

Some attempts have been made to recycle shingles into new shingles, but problems persist in reprocessing shingles to conform to feedstock requirements.

Recycling involves the use of heavy equipment (tailored for processing shingles and minimizing dust) to grind or shred shingle waste to a size useful in paving materials:

  • Parking lots or temporary roadways
  • Aggregate base course
  • Hot mix asphalt wear course
  • Pothole/road patch material
  • Granular base stabilization layer
  • Expansion joints
  • Moisture barrier under base course


If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!

About the author

Robert Robillard

Carpenter / Remodeler / Editor

Rob Robillard is “The Concord Carpenter” Rob is a builder, general contractor, carpenter, woodworker, and editor of Concord Carpenter and ToolBoxBuzz As a General Contractor and carpenter, Rob owns and operates Concord Carpenter LLC. A full-service remodeling and construction company. Rob is a recognized leader in home building best practices and a source for how-to information for building professionals. On this website, Rob covers all aspects of home construction, building science, home improvement, woodworking, remodeling, and some of the best product and tool reviews. Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review series - Concord Carpenter Videos where we post all of our tool reviews and video tutorials. Rob approaches remodeling and building construction with a pragmatic and problem-solving approach. He enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate building professionals as well as DIYers on best practices in the construction and remodeling industry. He's a strong advocate for "raising the bar" in the construction trades and promoting the trades to youth. #BeAMentor #Green2Great Craftsmanship, quality, and pride guide his journey on this channel The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob

All posts by Robert »

Not what you're looking for?

Search for more articles here. Enter keywords like roof leak, bookcase, deck, etc to find your topic.

© Copyright 2019 A Concord Carpenter · All Rights Reserved