Replacing a roof is something that most of us only handle a couple of times in our lifetime, so if you weren’t even aware that there are two different types of asphalt shingles to choose from, don’t sweat it. We’re here to help. We’re going to do a side-by-side comparison of these shingle types so that by the time you’re ready to get a new roof, you have the information you need to make an informed decision.
Since both 3-tab shingles and architectural shingles are asphalt shingles, they share a lot of qualities right out of the gate. The major differences between the two come down to the amount of material used and the quality that difference provides. Architectural shingles are heavier than 3-tab to the tune of approximately 50 percent. In addition, the base mat is thicker, they have stronger adhesives, and more granules than their 3-tab counterparts. All of this combined makes architectural shingles a sturdier choice.
The thing you’re most likely to notice when comparing 3-tab shingles to architectural is that architectural shingles have dimension to them, whereas 3-tab are flat. Furthermore, a 3-tab shingle is pretty much always going to look like a 3-tab shingle; architectural shingles, on the other hand, can be made to replicate different materials, including slate and cedar shakes, but without the maintenance or weight associated with either. As a result, architectural shingles are considered a more coveted roofing material when it comes to adding curb appeal or determining home value.
Architectural shingles also have an edge over 3-tab shingles when it comes to their ability to withstand wind, which makes sense when you consider that architectural shingles are denser. Your standard 3-tab shingle is designed to withstand winds of up to 60 MPH, which is certainly nothing to sneeze at. However, architectural shingles tend to rate anywhere from 80-120 MPH—something to consider in the heavy wind-prone Ozarks.
Again, the architectural shingle comes out ahead, thanks to its composition and durability. Many things can affect the lifespan of your roof, including but not limited to the climate and how often you have your roof inspected. Architectural shingles are designed to last from 18-20 years, but if given proper care may last as long as 30. Whereas 3-tab shingles, being lighter and less dense, may last as long as 12-15 years if well maintained and not subjected to harsh elements.
Architectural shingles tend to come with meatier warranties than their 3-tab counterparts, which makes sense as architectural shingles are also expected to outlast 3-tab shingles. Cost over time is also lower, as 3-tab shingles are more likely to present problems down the line.
Dale’s Roofing is pleased to offer both architectural and 3-tab shingles. We know this may seem like we heavily favor architectural, but there are applications in which 3-tab may make more sense. We’re happy to provide you with our recommendations based on your specific situation. If you have any question about shingle types, don’t hesitate to reach out!