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Reign Roofing Blog

What Are 3-Tab Shingles?


The roofing for homes has come a long way since the day of thatching and wooden planks. In fact, it’s come a long way over only the past few decades and the days of three-tab shingles. You have many options for other types of asphalt shingles like architectural shingles and new forms of tile and clay…

Wait, you want us to go back? Ah, you have a question: “What are three-tab shingles?” Sorry, we should’ve realized that if you’re not in the roofing business, you won’t know about this type of shingles

We’ll, since you’re here, let’s talk about three-tab shingles and what makes them different from other roofing materials. You may learn more about what type of roofing you want for your home.

The Basics of Three-Tab Shingles

More than 80% of homes in the US have shingle roofs. For older homes, the most common shingles are three-tab shingles. These are simple shingles that lay flat and can form an effective roof, even with more durable materials that have come along.

The usual three-tab shingle is manufactured from asphalt and fiberglass, a combination that makes the shingles durable and water resistant. They can also contain other material to alter their appearance (felt, paper). The top layer consists of ceramic granules for UV light resistance and to add to the shingles’ appearance.

Where does the “three-tab” part come in? Each three-tab shingle has three twelve-inch asphalt tabs. The shingles fit together using these tabs to create a basic flat and rectangular pattern. You can probably envision this type of roof in your mind, since you’ll have seen it on many homes. 

Advantages and Disadvantages of Three-Tab Shingles

If you’re considering materials for your roof, three-tab shingles have several appealing features. First, they are among the least expensive of roofing materials, and they are easy for installers to put in. They create a uniform flat design, so you’ll have a good idea what type of roof you’ll get. 

On the other hand, three-tab shingles do not last as long as architectural shingles, metal roofs, or tile roofs, lasting about 15 years. They lack the impact resistance of high-impact shingles, which makes them more susceptible to damage in stormy weather. They also don’t come in as many different designs, limiting the flexibility you have for the look of your roof. 

Do I Have 3-tab Shingles or Architectural Shingles? 

You might not know what type of roof material you have, but it isn’t difficult to recognize three-tab shingles. These shingles have a uniform size of 5” by 12” and create a simple square pattern without overlapping. Architectural shingles come in a different range of sizes and appearance and overlay each other to provide additional protection and better water runoff. 

Choosing Your Roof

With all the options available for a new roof, how can you tell if a roof made from three-tab shingle in Richmond, TX is ideal for you? It’s not tough at all: simply make an appointment with our team. We’re not only expert roofers, we understand the weather conditions in the Richmond area and the effect they have on different roofing types. We’ll see you get the right roof over your head.

Reach out to Reign Roofing. Redefining the Roof Buying Process!

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