How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

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One of the most popular modern roofing materials is shingles. In this article, we will answer the main questions facing the buyer: which manufacturer to prefer, how to determine the quality before buying and how to calculate the required amount of materials.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

The classic red-brown tiled roofs of ancient European cities still delight and surprise tourists with their beauty and graceful lines. Ceramic tiles are rightfully considered the queen among other roofing materials. But, unfortunately, it is not always possible to use it for arranging roofs. Cost and high requirements for the strength of the supporting structures are the two main obstacles. Fortunately, she has alternatives, and one of them is flexible roofing made of bituminous, or, as it is also called, flexible shingles..

What is flexible roof tile

In fact, it is a puff cake, where each layer performs a specific task, and in the aggregate, a very durable, absolutely waterproof material with a wide variety of shapes and colors is obtained – just what you need for a durable and beautiful roof. Shingles are sheets, usually 1000×310 mm in size (shingles), on one side of which there are decorative protrusions or tongues that create a tiled pattern.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

So let’s look at the layers from bottom to top:

  1. The first layer is self-adhesive strips or dots protected from sticking with a special film. It is this layer that ensures reliable adhesion of the shingles to each other, adhesion to the base and waterproofing of the entire surface as a whole. Some artisan manufacturers produce shingles without this layer. To fix it securely, you will have to create it yourself using bituminous roofing sealants, which will practically negate all the savings from buying such a tile..
  2. The second layer is a layer of oxidized or modified bitumen. Oxidized bitumen is somewhat cheaper, but it does not tolerate negative temperatures, therefore it is used for roofing only in regions with hot climates. If it is necessary for the roof to withstand harsh winters, then you need to choose a tile with a modified bitumen layer. It remains plastic and does not crack even at temperatures down to -50 ° C.
  3. The third layer is reinforcing. As a rule, it is a non-woven fiberglass. It gives the necessary strength to the tiles, and its non-woven (like a thin felt) structure provides the tiles with flexibility. It should be noted that some manufacturers use banal cardboard instead of fiberglass. Such shingles, in fact, differ little from roofing material and, as a result, have a significantly lower service life..
  4. The fourth layer is also bitumen. Thus, the reinforcing layer is soldered between the two layers of bitumen. To increase the service life, individual manufacturers make multi-layer shingles, that is, having several reinforcing, with intermediate bitumen layers.
  5. The fifth and final layer is the dusting layer. Most often it is basalt crumb. In addition to it, a layer of slate flakes can be used. Elite shingles can be coated with copper. The last layer not only decorates the tiles, but also gives them additional strength and, in addition, performs additional functions, for example, improves drainage.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing 1 – self-adhesive layer; 2 – modified bitumen; 3 – non-woven fiberglass; 4 – modified bitumen; 5 – basalt granulate

The service life of the finished roof will depend primarily on how and from what the flexible shingles are made. So a single-layer tile with fiberglass reinforcement will last at least 25 years. Using, by the way, cardboard instead of canvas, significantly reduces the service life to 5-6 years. If the tile has 2 or more layers, then its service life is 50 or more years. It should be noted that flexible shingles are a roofing material that practically does not require maintenance and, if necessary, can be easily repaired, and in some cases, easily dismantled, which makes it possible to use it on other surfaces..

Shingles manufacturers

At the moment, on the Russian market, you can find both imported and domestic manufacturers.

The most famous imported ones are ICOPAL, IKO, Tegola, Katepal and Kerabit. It is worth noting the manufacturers of luxury tiles: CertainTeed – super-heavy, 3D-patterned tiles – and, for example, BRAI – copper-coated tiles. In Russia, bituminous tiles are manufactured at the factories Ruflex and Technonikol (products under the Shinglas brand). Each of the manufacturers presents its own range of products. Perhaps, when choosing shingles, it is better to dwell on the products of these particular brands, since they are a time-tested reliable option, well adapted for Russian conditions. Against the background of the tiles of foreign manufacturers, I would like to note the advantages of Russian material. First of all, it is, of course, the price. So, for example, Ruflex shingles are in no way inferior in quality to Katepal products, while having a much more attractive price. In addition, buying products from domestic manufacturers, you will not depend on the supply (read availability in stock) of products in case you want to make an extension in the same style with the main building, or simply replace a piece of the roof.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

Different manufacturers make tiles in certain shapes and colors. When choosing, it must be borne in mind that not everyone makes the tiles you like in shape. So, for example, you can find the classic 6-angle shape from any manufacturer. But if you want uniqueness, then you have to look for the option that suits you. For example, it makes sense to take a closer look at CertainTeed products. or IKO.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

Thus, in order to decide what shape the shingles will be, you need to carefully look through the entire catalog of roofing collections of each manufacturer..

When choosing the color of your future roof, you need to be aware that shingles may vary in color in different batches. Therefore, if there is a need for additional purchase of material, then during installation it makes sense to mix the sheets purchased at different times. So you can hide the difference in color of different shingles..

Self-determination of the quality of tiles

As mentioned above, all well-known manufacturers produce high-quality, time-tested shingles. What if you still want to save money and buy products from lesser known companies? How to determine if it is worth buying or not? There are several signs of poor quality tiles:

  1. A thin or crumbling layer of dusting – if this happens, then such a tile will very quickly lose its protective top layer, crack from temperature changes, drain under the influence of solar heat and, as a result, will not last long.
  2. Small overall thickness of shingles – eminent manufacturers make shingles with a thickness of at least 3 mm. Thinning will lead to a significant deterioration in the waterproofing and strength properties of the tiles.
  3. Poor quality bitumen – insufficient plasticity of shingles, visible cracks in the bitumen layer – these are signs of poor quality bitumen. If the shingles do not have these obvious signs of poor quality, it makes sense to test the ductility of the bitumen. To do this, it is enough to pull strongly on the corner of the shingle. If it stretches without breaks, then the bitumen is most likely of normal quality. Do not forget that the demonstration materials that are shown in the office can be very different from those actually produced. Therefore, the check must be done on the finished material..
  4. The use of cardboard instead of fiberglass is also easily verified. Try tearing the edge of the shingles. You will not be able to do this if the basis of fiberglass.
  5. Poor or no adhesive layer. This has already been discussed above. It is unlikely that you will be able to save a lot by buying such a tile..

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

If you managed to find a tile of an unnamed manufacturer with a low price and high quality of products, then you can be congratulated on a healthy economy, and most likely we will soon see him among already well-known brands.

Calculation of the required material

So you have chosen the shingles. Now you need to calculate the amount of materials that will be required for the installation of the roof. Flexible shingles are laid on a flat solid surface made of moisture-resistant plywood, OSB or boards. Since this is a single requirement for any kind of flexible shingles, we will assume that you have already made such a foundation. On the website of almost any manufacturer, you can independently make an online selection (calculator) of the roof. However, it is not always convenient to use such a calculator. Not everyone knows, firstly, what materials may in principle be needed, and secondly, what can be used to replace the components offered by the manufacturer. What is needed to mount a shingle roof.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

Underlay or underlay carpet.This is a film or canvas with a bituminous layer. Provides additional waterproofing and better adhesion of the shingles to the substrate. For roofs with slopes up to 20 °, it is done over the entire roof area. Therefore, it is necessary to buy exactly on the basis of the total roof area plus 10-15% for overlaps. For roofs with a slope angle of more than 20 °, the lining is sufficient only on the ridge, in valleys, on eaves and in places where the roof adjoins with other elements, for example, pipes. In this case, we sum up all the lengths of the indicated elements, plus the perimeters of the abutments – we get the length of the required strip. Since the size of the overlap of the substrate on each side should be at least 500 mm, the width of the strip, as you might guess, should be from 1000 mm and more. Add the required stock by 10-15% and get the total amount of material. By the way, you can save on the substrate if you use euroruberoid when covering the entire roof surface. The result will be virtually indistinguishable from the original roofing. The underlay carpet is attached to self-adhesive strips (if available), to nails or using a construction stapler.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

Sheet cornice tiles.It is installed along the eaves and along the roof ridge. The eaves is, in fact, the first row of shingles. It is clear that by calculating the sum of the lengths of the cornices and ridge we will get the length of the required strip of cornice tiles. Depending on how many joints are obtained, we add the necessary margin (overlaps at the joints should be at least 100 mm). It is allowed to use instead of the eaves ordinary tiles with cut-off figured elements.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

Drippers and pediment strips.These are metal stripes. They serve to protect the battens from weather influences. They are mounted on top of the lining along the edges of the side overhangs (droppers) and gable overhangs (gable strips). We sum up the lengths of these elements – we get the required amount. Since there is no overlap during docking, there is no need to take into account the margin when calculating. If desired, droppers can be replaced with any L-shaped profile.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

Ordinary tile.Strictly speaking, the main material. Since it covers the entire roof surface, it is necessary to buy such an amount to completely cover the roof area plus 10-15% for fit and overlap.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

Supporting materials.This includes all fasteners (nails, screws, staples for a stapler), sealants, etc. Since these are consumables, it is not possible to strictly calculate their number. It is different in each individual case. Most importantly, you must always remember that you cannot save on consumables!

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

Thus, remembering how the areas of the simplest geometric shapes are calculated (the entire roof surface can be divided into rectangles and triangles) and having carefully measured all the distances, it will be easy to calculate the amount of material required to equip a roof of any, even the most complex configuration.

How to buy quality shingles for soft roofing

After the required amount of all materials has been purchased: lining, tiles, pediment strips, fasteners, etc., you can proceed with the installation of the roof. The detailed installation process is described in the article “Laying flexible shingles with your own hands”. All work on the installation of flexible roofing is quite simple, so it is easy to do on your own. Since the mass of one shingle, as a rule, does not exceed 1 kg, one person on the roof and one below is enough to carry out all the necessary operations.

All that is required by the laying of tiles is accuracy and strict adherence to all the requirements of the technological process. If everything is done correctly, then your roof will delight you not only with its reliability, but also with its beautiful appearance, which is practically not inferior to a roof made of natural tiles, and the use of elite lines of bituminous tiles, for example, with a copper coating, will give elite to your roof.

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