A shingle roofing is described as a kind of roof covering that consists of individual overlapping elements. The elements in roof shingle are laid in courses from the edge of the roof going up, with every successive course overlapping the joints beneath it, and these elements are usually flat and rectangular in shapes. There are several different materials that made up the shingles, and these are wood, slate, flagstone, metal, plastic, and composite materials like fiber cement and asphalt shingles. In Europe and some parts in Asia, the ceramic roof tiles, usually just called tiles, are in dominance in use.
Almost always, roof shingles are very visible, thus this aspect of a building is very important especially where aesthetics is concern with reference to patterns, textures and colors. The materials of roof shingles are usually available in your locality, just like other building materials on vernacular buildings. Since the material affects the pitch of the roof and its construction method, the type of shingle is being considered before construction begins. The installation of some shingles are on lath while others would need solid sheathing on the deck of the roof. To avoid leaks, all shingle roofs are installed from the bottom going up, and it begins with a starter course with the edge seams offset. It is beneficial for many shingle installations to place them on top of an underlayment material like asphalt felt paper, and this method would further prevent leakages due to wind, rain, snow and ice dams. Consider though that some roof shingles are non-combustible and have better fire rating than the other kinds that would affect the use, especially some building codes do not allow less than class-A fire rating to be used on some types of buildingins. The increased probability of fire has led to the less common use of wood shingles and organic-based asphalt shingles compared to the fiberglass-based asphalt shingles. Since no shingles are water-tight, their recommended roof pitch is 4:12 devoid of underlayment material.
For residential roofing applications, the most common roofing material by far being used like in the United States are fiberglass-based asphalt shingles. Much less common in use are the bitumen roof shingles or tile strips as called in Europe, and these shingles are less expensive, easy to install and can last 20 to 50 years.
When choosing your roof shingles, be aware of the source of their protection, like the protection of paper and fiberglass asphalt shingles comes from the long-chain petroleum carbons, while the wood shingles are protected from the natural oils in the cellulose structure of the wood.
Shingles are further made of other materials such as stone, fiber cement, metal, plastic and cedar shingles.