Choosing the right roofing material can be challenging. There are numerous options on the market and many styles and materials. However, architectural shingles are among the most popular and cost-effective roofing materials.
These shingles are made from high-quality, long-lasting materials that can withstand inclement weather, solar radiation, and high winds. Our comprehensive guide to architectural roof shingles can help you understand if this roofing solution is right for your home and the potential benefits of installing an architectural shingle roof.
What Are Architectural Shingles?
Modern asphalt shingles were first invented in 1901 by Henry Reynolds. This new type of roofing combined an organic or fiberglass-based material with an asphalt-saturated base layer. This provided unmatched durability and weather resistance at a cost-effective price.
Over the years, the organic and fiberglass materials mixed with the asphalt base layer have varied as material science improved. Once asbestos was one of the most popular choices, but modern shingles use a range of materials, including different stones like slate or quarts, vitrified brick, or metal compounds like copper.
Architectural asphalt shingles represent a step forward in design and functionality, combining high-quality materials, usually copper and ceramic, with the traditional asphalt base layer. They are made with the latest technology and are laminated to make them thicker and more durable.
Lamination also allows architectural shingles to be fabricated in various shapes without sacrificing their structural integrity, ensuring they can fit a wider variety of roof designs. They allow homes to have the beauty of more traditional roofing tiles and shingles, with various textures and colors, but with the strength of a modern roof.
Source: OC StreakGuard
Architectural shingles are sold under different names, such as laminate, fiberglass, or dimensional shingles. Often these terms are combined like architectural fiberglass shingles or dimensional laminate shingles.
Premium architectural shingles might also add words like luxury, designer, or premium to the name to indicate that they are of exceptionally high quality, have extra layers of construction, or are available in a unique color.
Regardless of the brand name used, architectural shingles are a type of asphalt shingle that combines layers of mineral, copper, and ceramic materials to create a long-lasting, cost-effective roofing material.
Different Types of Architectural Shingles
Modern architectural shingles are available in several types to suit different climatic conditions and roof designs. However, despite differences in shape, all architectural shingles are made of the same high-quality materials.
GAF architectural shingles
GAF architectural shingles are made from fiberglass and laminated asphalt layers to create durable, weather-resistant roofing shingles. They have the highest possible fire rating and are eligible for a manufacturer wind warranty when properly installed.
These shingles are available in various colors and styles, giving you a wide range of options to create a beautiful, long-lasting roof.
Owens Corning architectural shingles
Owens Corning architectural shingles are an excellent choice for many homes. Their Duration© line includes the budget-friendly Duration Designer, and the more premium Duration Flex offers beautiful color contrasting patterns and exceptional value. Their shingles are made from SBS polymer-modified asphalt and are suitable for all four seasons.
CertainTeed architectural shingles
CertainTeed has been making architectural shingles for 30 years and has continued to hone its design. Their architectural shingles consist of a fiberglass base mat combined with a top layer of ceramic-coated mineral granules embedded in water-resistant asphalt.
They offer two lines of beautiful shingles, the Cedar Shakes and Slate lines that include different patterns, textures, and colors to match any home.
Architectural Shingles FAQ
Before purchasing a new roof, many homeowners are curious about different roofing options and how to choose the right material for their home. Here are some frequently asked questions that homeowners want to know before purchasing an architectural shingle roof.
What is the difference between architectural shingles and regular shingles?
Architectural shingles are higher-quality and longer lasting than regular roofing shingles. Regular roofing shingles are typically made of a single layer of woven fiberglass encased in an asphalt mixture. Black or other dark-colored ceramic granules are added to the top of the shingle to reflect solar light and heat, and the lower half of the shingle is cut in two places to form three tabs.
On the other hand, architectural shingles are made of at least two or three layers of higher quality materials and are not cut into tabs at the bottom. They are shaped into a dimensional profile giving them a variable appearance that can better suit different types of homes.
While regular roofing shingles are generally good, architectural shingles are made with more durable construction. They have a more attractive appearance giving you better longevity, durability, and value for your money.
Is it worth getting architectural shingles?
While architectural shingles are generally more expensive than standard shingles, they last longer, are more weather resistant, and are generally better looking. When comparing architectural shingles vs 3 tab shingles or architectural shingles vs asphalt shingles, architectural shingles are worth the added cost.
How long do architectural shingles actually last?
Architectural shingles are a long-lasting roofing solution. Standard architectural shingles can last more than 25 years. While the standard architectural shingles’ lifespan is quite long, some manufacturers offer even longer-lasting designs, with 30-year architectural shingles and even 50-year architectural shingles available on the market.
Which is better: asphalt shingles or architectural shingles?
Architectural shingles are better than standard asphalt shingles because they have a multi-layered construction making them both stronger and longer lasting. Architectural shingles are also available in more designs, colors, and patterns than standard asphalt shingles.
The colors of architectural roof shingles can match almost any decor or home style. The sheer number of architectural roof shingles colors makes them a better option for most homeowners.
Which is better: 3-tab shingles or architectural shingles?
Architectural shingles are superior to 3-tab shingles. 3-tab shingles are an effective and affordable roofing option; however, they are made of only one layer of woven fiberglass and asphalt, making them less durable and prone to reflective granule loss.
The double cut at the bottom of 3-tab shingles that gives them their name reduces their design uses and can lead to damage over time, generally decreasing the lifespan of a 3-tab roof to around 15 years.
Architectural shingles are at least double layered, more durable, better at matching a home’s design, and last, on average, a decade longer than standard 3-tab shingles.
What is the average price for architectural shingles?
The price of an architectural shingle roof will vary depending on your location, the size of your home, and which style, architectural shingles colors, and manufacturer you choose. On average, nationwide basic architectural shingles cost $120-165 per 100-foot square. However, this does not include the labor costs or other materials, such as the underlayment.
Architectural Shingles Installation
Proper installation is one of the keys to ensuring longevity in an architectural shingle roof. If your new roof is installed by professionals using proper equipment and techniques, your roof will look nicer, last longer, and better protect your home from the elements.
AJ Reyes Roofing is your architectural shingles roofer in Los Angeles, CA. We are a family-owned and operated business that has been serving valued customers across Southern California for over 25 years.
We offer high-quality roofing at affordable prices and pride ourselves on delivering the same quality that has kept them in business for a quarter century to every roof they work on. Contact us today to learn more about architectural shingles and get a quote on a beautiful new roof for your home.