Manufacture History

I enjoy knowing some history about our products and who manufactures them.I hope you find them as interesting as I have.(Warning:Extremely long post)


The company was established in 1904 as the General Roofing Manufacturing Company by George M. Brown in St. Louis, Missouri with $25,000 in start up capital. In 1917, the company restructured, incorporated, and changed its name to the Certain-teed Products Corporation. It began trading on the New York Stock Exchange in 1918.


1912 - General Roofing publishes its first annual report.

1913 - General Roofing began manufacturing individual asphalt shingles.

1923 - CertainTeed enters gypsum plaster business and begins manufacturing gypsum wallboard.

1923 - Company headquarters relocates from St. Louis to New York, NY.

1935 - George M. Brown resigns as President and CEO.

1938 - Celotex Corporation takes control of CertainTeed acquiring a majority of the common stock.

1942 - Company headquarters relocates from New York to Chicago, Illinois.

1944 - Rawson G. Lizars wins proxy battle and takes control of CertainTeed from Celotex.

1942 - CertainTeed is awarded a national defense contract.

1948 - Company headquarters relocates from Chicago to Ardmore, PA.

1951 - CertainTeed introduces “Fire-Stop” gypsum wallboard.

1952 - CertainTeed opens its first R&D facility in Paoli, PA.

1955 - Malcolm Meyer becomes President of CertainTeed.

1959 - CertainTeed develops the industry’s first fully automatic shingle packaging machine.

1969 - CertainTeed begins producing solid vinyl siding.

1970 - Company headquarters relocates from Ardmore to Valley Forge, PA.

1973 - Saint-Gobain increases its shareholdings in CertainTeed to 32%.

1976 - CertainTeed Products Corporation changes its name to CertainTeed Corporation.

1976 - Saint-Gobain becomes majority shareholder increasing its ownership to 52%.

1979 - CertainTeed pioneers the development of vinyl windows.

1983 - Saint-Gobain increases its ownership position in CertainTeed to 57%.

1988 - CertainTeed becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of Saint-Gobain.

1998 - CertainTeed enters fiber cement siding business acquiring Roaring River,
NC facility from ABT Building Products.

2004 - CertainTeed celebrates its 100th anniversary.

2008 - CertainTeed enters polyurethane spray foam in North America.

Mergers and Acquisitions;

1954 CertainTeed acquired Wm. Cameron & Co, a major building supplies wholesaler.

1954 Western Gypsum is purchased by BPB which becomes CertainTeed Gypsum in 2006.

1962 CertainTeed acquired the pipe division of Keasbey and Mattison Company, the second largest US producer of A/C pipe.

1964 CertainTeed acquired the fiber glass manufacturing facilities of the Pall Corporation.

1965 CertainTeed acquired Plains Plastic Inc, a manufacturer of PVC pipe.

1966 Gustin-Bacon Manufacturing, a manufacturer of specialty fiber glass products, merges with CertainTeed.

1966 the company merged with Gustin-Bacon Manufacturing Corporation, a producer of fiberglass products.

1968 CertainTeed acquires controlling interest in Modular Sciences Inc.

1969 CertainTeed acquires Bowles & Eden Co and the Rohan Company, pipe distribution businesses.

1970 CertainTeed acquires Realtec Inc and establishes Builders Investment Group,

1986 CertainTeed acquires AirVent, Inc, a manufacturer of attic and ridge vents.

1987 CertainTeed acquires Bay Mills, Ltd.

1988 CertainTeed was acquired by Compagnie de Saint-Gobain SA (March 25, 1988).

1988 CertainTeed acquires Wolverine Technologies.

1989 CertainTeed acquires Ludowici Roof Tile, Inc.

1996 CertainTeed acquires Bufftech Vinyl Fencing.

1998 CertainTeed acquires Bird Roofing.

1999 CertainTeed acquires Unisul and GS Roofing.

2000 CertainTeed acquires Celotex Roofing.

2000 CertainTeed acquires Brunswick Technologies, Inc.

2007 CertainTeed acquires Vytec Vinyl Siding.

2009 CertainTeed acquires Ottawa Fibre expanding its insulation presence into Canada.


CertainTeed operates 65 manufacturing plants in the United States and Canada.Its products include building insulation, asphalt shingles, gypsum wallboard, fiber cement siding, foundations, fencing, pipes, PVC trim, and composite decking and railing. It exports building products to more than 50 countries. CertainTeed has held more than 350 patents on its products in the past 30 years.

Notable uses;
-CertainTeed roofing products were used for the Vanderbilt Mansion in Hyde Park, New York.
-CertainTeed roofing products were used for the Henry Ford Home in Detroit, Michigan.
-The film The Notebook was filmed at a CertainTeed/Saint-Gobain plant in Charleston, South Carolina.
-CertainTeed’s parent company, Saint-Gobain, makes the gamma ray spectrometer for NASA’s Lunar Prospector spacecraft.
-CertainTeed fiber glass insulation was used at the National Ignition Facility, home of the world’s largest laser.

Historically, CertainTeed was a major manufacturer of asbestos-cement pipes for water utilities for many decades. Asbestos was mixed into the cement as a binder. CertainTeed phased out the use of asbestos in its products around 1990. As a result, CertainTeed is now a major defendant in product liability lawsuits brought by persons who worked on water utility projects and their families.

-On April 29, 2010, in a product liability case filed by a mesothelioma patient whose husband used to cut CertainTeed pipe for a living, a Los Angeles Superior Court jury returned a verdict of $8.8 million in compensatory damages and $200 million in punitive damages against CertainTeed and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

The allocation of fault was 70% to CertainTeed and 30% to LADWP. On July 21, 2010, the Court overturned this verdict, and specifically granted CertainTeed’s post-trial motions, holding that the punitive damage award was unconstitutional, that the amount of punitive damages could not exceed the amount of compensatory damages, and that a new trial was required on all issues.The case is currently on appeal.

Owens Corning

The industrial fury of the 19th and early 20th centuries gave birth to innumerable revolutionary ideas and inventions that changed the lives of tens of millions. One of the most forward-thinking visions involved creating fibers from glass - one of the world’s oldest and most abundant materials.

In 1935, realizing the potential growth of the glass fiber insulation market, Corning Glass, which had briefly experimented with glass fiber manufacturing in the 1920s, approached Owens-Illinois with a proposal to join forces in the production of glass fiber.

In 1938, experimental costs prompted Corning Glass and Owens-Illinois to spin off the joint venture as a separate company. And, on Nov. 1, 1938, Owens-Corning Fiberglas® Corporation was announced. By the end of 1938, the company reported sales of $2.5 million, and had more than 600 employees.

Owens Corning became publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange in 1952. Annual sales grew to more than $2 billion by the end of the 1970’s.
The Pink Panther, a much-loved cartoon character, became Owens Corning’s corporate mascot on Aug. 15, 1980, to promote the sales of PINK Fiberglas® insulation.

On May 12, 1987, Owens Corning made legal history as the first company to trademark a color, in this case, PINK.

At the end of the 1980’s, Owens Corning reported sales of $3 billion, and employed more than 18,000 people around the world.

In 1996, Owens-Corning Fiberglas® Corporation officially changed its name to Owens Corning to reflect the company’s business growth and technology expansion.

Since that time, Owens Corning has led every major technological advance in glass fiber technology. Nearly countless subsequent innovations have seen Owens Corning grow to a position of world leadership in glass fiberization and dramatically change the way people live, work and play.

Owens Corning (NYSE: OC) is a leading global producer of residential and commercial building materials, glass fiber reinforcements and engineered materials for composite systems. A Fortune 500 company for 57 consecutive years, Owens Corning is committed to driving sustainability through delivering solutions, transforming markets and enhancing lives.

Owens Corning makes residential, commercial and industrial buildings more energy efficient, comfortable and attractive with its insulation, roofing, and asphalt products. The company’s composites systems provide a broad range of high-performance solutions for transportation, wind energy, electronics, telecommunications, infrastructure and consumer markets.

With 15,000 employees in 28 countries on five continents, Owens Corning is a leader in nearly every market it serves. By delivering solutions that conserve energy and protect the environment, Owens Corning is helping make the world a better place, one community at a time.

Owens Corning is recognized around the world as a manufacturing leader. The company has received several distinctions and awards for excellence.
100 Best Corporate Citizens

Owens Corning was been named to Corporate Responsibility Magazine’s 12th annual list of the “100 Best Corporate Citizens™.” The company’s ranking of 68th on the 2011 list.

Fortune 500
Owens Corning has been recognized as a Fortune 500 company for 56 consecutive years. In 2011, the company ranked 432.

Top 100 Most Innovative Companies
Owens Corning is ranked as one of the 100 most innovative companies in the field of business technology by InformationWeek magazine.

Owens Corning a ‘Best Place to Work’ in Latin America
The Great Place to Work® Institute and Revista Época, a leading news magazine in Brazil, named Owens Corning one of the best places to work in Latin America for the fourth consecutive year, and the best company to work for in the country’s chemical/petrochemical industry.

Owens Corning Named a Best Place to Work in Mexico
Expansion, one of Mexico’s foremost business magazines, named Owens Corning one of the top 25 best places to work in Mexico.

National Inventors Hall of Fame

Three Owens Corning innovators, Dale Kleist, Dr. Russell Games Slayter and John T “Jack” Thomas were announced as 2006 inductees into the National Inventors Hall of Fame for their inventions that resulted in the process for the production of glass fiber insulation in large quantities.

Architect’s Choice for Excellence

Owens Corning received the most votes from architects in the Building Insulation category for the 2006 Architect’s Choice for Excellence (ACE) awards presented annually by Architect Magazine.


GAF Materials Corporation, doing business as GAF, is a company based in Wayne, New Jersey, that has roots dating back to the late 19th century. The GAF acronym stands for General Aniline & Film. The company has historically been primarily focused on manufacturing of roofing materials for residential and commercial applications.

At one time GAF was also active in manufacturing photographic film as well as cameras and projectors (both still and motion picture). Briefly in the 1970s, it was the official film of Disneyland and at this time, actor Henry Fonda served as the company’s spokesman in several television commercials including one that featured Jodie Foster in her first acting role.

A home in Avalon, NJ showing GAF Asphalt Roofing Shingles.
Founded in 1886, GAF has become the largest roofing manufacturer in North America, with sales approaching $3 billion. With 24 manufacturing plants located throughout the United States, the company has nearly 3300 employees.

GAF’s products include a comprehensive portfolio of steep-slope and commercial roofing systems, which are supported by an extensive national network of factory-certified contractors. Its flagship brand is the Timberline architectural shingle. In addition to roofing, the company offers other building materials, such as fiber-cement siding, specialty fabrics, and metal ductwork.

In 2007, GAF acquired ElkCorp, another significant roofing manufacturer. In 2011, GAF was the first roofing manufacturer to offer a Lifetime limited warranty on all of its laminated shingles and, in 2012, it introduced the GAF Lifetime Roofing System.


1886 – Company founded (as The Standard Paint Company)

1892 – First ready-to-lay asphalt roofing is created. Similar to rubber and marked in easy-to-use rolls, it is called Ruberoid and changes the way roofs are installed.

1904 – Method perfected to embed colored granules in asphalt coating

1912 – Easy-to-install individually cut asphalt shingles are introduced

1921 – Based on the success of its roofing line, Standard Paint changes its name to the Ruberoid Company

1933 – Interlocking shingles are introduced as an inexpensive, aesthetically pleasing alternative to older roofing methods

1967 – Ruberoid merges with GAF and adopts the GAF name

1967 – America’s most popular shingle, the Timberline architectural shingle, is introduced

2004 – Introduced first pre-coated energy-efficient modified bitumen membranes

2005 – Introduced first energy-efficient asphalt shingle available in rich colors

2007 – GAF acquires ElkCorp

2010 - Introduced solar grade single-ply TPO membranes

2011 – First company to offer lifetime limited warranty on all laminated shingles

2012 – First company to offer lifetime limited warranty on entire roofing system

On Jan. 8, 2001, GAF’s principal shareholder became the 27th company in the United States to file for protection under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code from liabilities relating to asbestos-related bodily injury claims. GAF Materials Corporation was not involved in the manufacture or sale of asbestos containing products and thus it did not have any liability related to these claims.

GAF’s shareholder emerged from bankruptcy in 2009 having discharged its asbestos-related bodily injury claims.
Products manufactured by GAF Materials Corporation



Residential Roofing

Asphalt Roofing Shingles

TruSlate Slate Roofing

Roof Leak Barriers

Roof Deck Protection

Low-Slope Membrane Roofing

Ridge Cap Roofing Shingles

Attic Vents - Roof Ventilation

Starter Strip Roofing Shingles

Roof Accessory Paint


Commercial Roofing

Built-Up Roofing (BUR)

Modified Bitumen Roofing

Single-Ply Roofing

TPO Roofing

Liquid Roofing Membrane

Garden Roofing

Roofing Insulation

There is a significant chunk of GAF’s history missing there…

What about the class leader IKO?

I don’t like IKO.,and I am pretending they don’t exist. :slight_smile:

Axiom.,I know a lot of GAF’s info was left out.I was tired lastnight by the time I was finished.And about 2/3 the way into it I started thinking what did I get myself into.Hahahahaha., :oops:

Yes IKO is my least favorite- they were king up here but the word about Warranty denials.

[quote=“john white”]hey! talking about roofing manufactor check this one out they were big intill brough out by Owen Corning this was the biggest company in its time[/quote]

Cool info.If someone really took the time to research a manufacture in its entirety you could probably fill 100-200 or more pages.I really like these types of articles.

Alot of people know these manufactures as shingle makers but to really know who is making the materials and maybe what they did or had to do to survive might give some inspiration to realize that business is a bit** sometimes and things are not easily achieved in this industry.And maybe gain some pride and integrity when finding out what it took to keep that name for so many years.

Thanks For all the work you did to create this. I really enjoyed it !

cool post. thanks

Thanks for posting. great stuff.