Hutchens Construction offers shingle recycling

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Hutchens Construction Company, which is headquartered in Cassville, is now accepting used asphalt shingles at its plants in Purdy, Shell Knob and Eagle Rock.

"Last year, we recycled enough shingles to cover over 3,000 houses or 5,700 tons of shingles," said Phil Hutchens, owner. "We saved a lot of landfill space."

The company began offering shingle recycling services at three of its locations in Barry County last year after receiving information on the program from the National Asphalt Pavement Association.

In the past, individuals looking to dispose of used shingles would take the shingles to an area landfill. Using this method, individuals and companies were charged a tipping fee that was often $60 or more per ton of shingles.

Although Hutchens Construction does charge a small drop-off fee, which covers the labor involved in handling the shingles and the recycling process, it is minimal compared to the price roofers now find themselves forced to pay when transporting shingles to one of the landfills located in Springfield, Carthage or northwest Arkansas.

Individuals or businesses can dispose of used asphalt shingles for less than $50 per ton. Roofers disposing of quantities that fit in the back of a pickup or small trailer will only pay a $30 fee.

"The fee is just to offset our handling costs," said Hutchens. "It allows us to offer a good recycling opportunity without paying a large cost."

Community members who would like to bring used shingles to one of the recycling locations can do so during regular hours, which are from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

"The shingles need to be relatively clean with no wood, steel flashing or trash in them," said Hutchens. "Nails are not a problem; we can remove those with a magnet. Roof paper is okay too. Just make sure there is not a lot of wood."

When individuals arrive at the drop-off location, they should drive up to the scale where a plant employee will direct them through the process to dispose of the used shingles.

"We grind the shingles and then run them through a special recycling bin to introduce them back into the asphalt mix stream," said Hutchens.

The recycling process allows the shingle material to melt and become part of the liquid paving material, which Hutchens Construction uses in its paving projects. Recently, recyclable materials were used in a paving project at Bank of America in Cassville.

In addition to recycling shingles, Hutchens Construction recycles asphalt millings that are ground off of roadways and asphalt pieces from other projects.

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