Are Roof Shingles Toxic?

With so many different materials, colors and styles on the market, choosing new roof shingles can be a challenge. One aspect that you might not think to consider when browsing for shingle roofing is whether the material is toxic. Despite what you may read online, today’s shingles are not toxic. Continue reading to learn more about the toxicity of roof shingles.

Do I need to worry?

It’s true that roof shingles were toxic a few decades ago due to their asbestos content. But any shingles produced after 1989 are guaranteed to be asbestos free. The only reason to be concerned about toxic shingles is if you’re pulling up old shingles that are several decades old. When that’s the case, workers should wear respirators, safety goggles, work gloves and long-sleeved shirts to avoid exposure to carcinogens.

Disposing of old shingles

Pulling up old, potentially toxic shingles is only step one of dealing with old shingle roofing. Next, you’ll need to figure out what to do with them.

We recommend trying to take them to the recycling center first. Asphalt shingles can be added back into hot-mix asphalts for future use. Be sure to call the recycling center ahead of time to verify whether they accept old shingles.

If the recycling center doesn’t accept your shingles, you’ll need to haul them to the landfill. Try to minimize the amount of airborne dust produced when handling those old shingles—the dust is the most dangerous part of toxic shingles.

Should you handle your own roofing work?

It’s possible to handle your own roofing repairs, but roofing is generally a job best left to the professionals. Here are a few reasons to avoid DIY roofing:

  • Slips and falls: Just because adding new shingles isn’t toxic doesn’t mean it’s safe. Roofing is a dangerous industry—falls are common with amateurs, as are on-roof accidents. Save yourself from expensive medical bills by hiring a qualified contractor to handle the job.
  • Inadequate job: Even if you’re able to make it through the job without hurting yourself or others, there’s a good chance the repairs won’t be done very well. We’ve seen DIY repairs lead to massive leaks, rotten underlayment or other significant problems that eventually necessitate the help of a professional.
  • Warranty protection: If your current roof is under warranty, you’ll want to avoid doing your own roofing work. Performing DIY repairs can void your warranty, which is much more costly than paying a professional to work on it from the get-go.
  • Time: Most roof repairs need to be made as soon as possible because they’ll only get worse as time goes on. Because they’re experienced, have better tools and more manpower, contractors can complete roof repairs much faster than the average homeowner. Plus, hiring a pro means you won’t need to waste your weekend up on the roof!

Choose Greg’s Roofing of Bay County, Inc.

Whether you need someone to put on a new roof or make a few repairs, just call the team at Greg’s Roofing of Bay County, Inc. With years of experience and fair pricing, we’re the go-to team for all of your shingle roofing needs.

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