You might think of roof shingles as coming in one basic type. Since most people don’t give too much thought to their roof or what it’s made of (at least until they really need that roof!), it’s easy to think of shingles as just, well, shingles.
However, the asphalt shingles that make up the upper layer of the roofs of 80% of the homes in the U.S. come in a range of types. For a long time, the most common shingle was the 3-tab shingle, and you’ll still find these on the majority of homes. Among professional roofers, however, architectural shingles have taken over as the shingle of choice. Here at Reign Roofing, we favor 30-year architectural shingles. What does that mean, and what are the benefits of these shingles?
3-tab and architectural shingles are made from the same materials: asphalt, adhesives, outer surface granules, and fiberglass backing. What makes them different is the quality and amount of material used and how they fit together.
Standard 3-tab shingles have one-foot wide asphalt tabs and slide together to create a flat surface. Architectural shingles don’t have the three tabs, but are instead made of two strips of asphalt laminated together. This makes them heavier and sturdier than 3-tab shingles, and they don’t create a flat surface. Architectural shingles also have stronger adhesives and more granules.
The Benefits of Architectural Shingles
Although these shingles cost more than purchasing a 3-tab shingle roof, they have multiple benefits that have made them the top choice for roofers.
- They last twice as long as 3-tab shingles, hence the “30-year” in the name. In practice, most roofs with architectural shingles will last from 16-18 years, but these shingles come with a 30-year warranty. 3-tab shingles, on the other hand, may only last 7-10 years in our local weather conditions.
- They can withstand higher wind speeds compared to 3-tab shingles, and that can make a huge difference in Texas where wind is a major cause of roof damage. Architectural shingles can hold up against winds up to 130 mph. For comparison, 3-tab shingles are only rated to winds up to 60 mph.
- Architectural shingles have higher durability against other forms of weather damage such as heat, rain, ice, and hail.
- 3-tab shingles don’t offer much in the way of customization—they have a uniform shape and size. Architectural shingles come in a wide range of colors and textures and add dimension to a roof (which is why they’re sometimes called dimensional shingles). They can be designed to look like other materials, such as slate, but without the disadvantages that can come with those materials.
3-tab and 3-year architectural shingles aren’t your only choice when it comes to a new shingle roof. The best way to find out what type of new roof is best for your home is to work with our experts. We can handle shingle services in Richmond, TX and have extensive experience with the local weather conditions and how they affect roofs.
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