How Are Shingles Recycled?

Owens Corning offers a user-friendly database for homeowners to track down local Owens Corning Roofing Platinum and Preferred contractors who offer knowledgeable service and a commitment to recycling old building materials.

When shingles are removed, these contractors take the discards to local recycling centers like Dem-Con, which serves the Twin Cities metro area in Minnesota.

At its Shakopee, Minn., facility, Dem-Con accepts around 60,000 tons of shingles per year and processes them for recycling. After a load of recycled shingles arrives at the plant, it’s transported to a 6-acre lot that is exclusively devoted to shingle processing.

From there, the material is sorted and all non-shingle waste is removed. This can include anything from shipping pallets and plastic wrap to soda bottles from the job site, Haus tells Earth911.

Then, shingles are ground up according to state specifications for hot mix asphalt, which includes making sure the shingles fall within the correct size range based on their intended end use. Once the shingle material is prepared, it is shipped off to local hot mix asphalt producers to be integrated into paving mix for roadways, private driveways, walking paths and more.

“There’s anywhere between 18 to 24 percent asphalt in a roofing shingle that sits on somebody’s home,” Haus says. “So, there’s a lot of value in that shingle for the hot mix asphalt producer.”

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By Mary Mazzoni

Mary is a lifelong vegetarian and enjoys outdoor activities like hiking, biking and relaxing in the park. When she’s not outside, she’s probably watching baseball. She is a former assistant editor for Earth911.