Comparing Different Types of Shingles
Roof shingles, also referred to as tile strips, are a roof covering that consists of individual overlapping elements. They normally are set in a flat, rectangular shape. However, it isn’t uncommon for square and horizontal designs to be made.
The more rectangular shapes, typically flat are laid out in courses from the bottom edge of the roof up, with each successive strip overlapping the next when installed from the bottom edge of the roof up. Shingles also vary in the material they are made of with asphalt being the more commonly preferred choice.
However, other options such as wood, slate, cedar shakes, metal or even clay tiles are alternative variants as well. Also in turn, different types of roof shingles have separate heat transfer properties that can affect the home’s temperature.
In short, the quality and type of roofing materials used to roof your house will affect the total lifespan of your home over time. The cheaper the roofing shingles are, the more likely the roof will suffer and deteriorate faster.
As a result, for most homeowners, asphalt tends to be perhaps the most plausible, simple, and cost-effective solution and they are manufactured in two types: three-tab and architectural.
However, if the homeowner is on a budget, the first question they would ask is, what is the price difference between a 3-tab shingle and architectural? Perhaps the right question to ask first would be, are 3-tab shingles are the same as Architectural? Well, let’s first assess the difference between the two available options…
What are Three-Tab Shingles?
The 3-tab shingles are the first choice people most often associate with the asphalt choice as they are the entry level roof shingles. This option comes in a single identical tab size, shape and thickness, even though they are available in a variety of colors.
In addition, 3-tab shingles lie flat to the roof decking thereby creating a clean shape with neat-looking lines on your roof.
What are Architectural Shingles?
Architectural shingles are also known for dimensional or laminate shingles. They have a different look from the traditional 3-tab shingles as they come in various shapes and sizes and are 50% thicker and heavier than 3 tab ones.
They have no cutouts, but an additional layer of asphalt is laminated on their lower portion creating the contoured, dimensional look that gives them their name.
Additionally, the sealant used to create the look reinforces its waterproof capability. So, to answer the common question, is 3-tab shingles are the same as Architectural? Well, they are inherently different as both have their advantages and disadvantages over one another, as you will see below.
The main Pros and Cons of 3-Tab and Architectural Shingles
When we look at the basic characteristics of 3 tab and architectural shingles,the difference between the two options varies very largely. However, the main question that tends to be looked at often is what is the price difference between a three tab shingle and architectural?
Well, besides answering that question, let’s also dissect all the reasons that separate the two varieties…
Architectural Shingles advantages:
- Architectural shingles have much longer warranties and guarantee because they are thicker than most 3-tab shingles. They have a minimum 30-year guarantee, whereas it’s roughly 25 years for 3-tabs.
- They are more durable as they tend to resist higher wind speeds than 3-tab shingles as architectural shingles are rated for wind speeds up to 80-120 mph compared to 3-tab’s 60mph.
- In terms of look and aesthetic they are the more preferred option as they are similar to cedar and slate and are much better in hiding imperfections.
- Their high value raises the home’s property value in the event of a future sale.
Architectural Shingles disadvantages:
- So, what is the price difference between a three tab shingle and architectural? In terms of price, architectural shingles usually cost 20% to 40% percent more than three-tab shingles. The higher cost tends to be a disparaging factor for most builders.
- In terms of weight, since architectural shingles weigh up to 50% more than 3-tab shingles, this could end up compromising your house if it isn’t structurally prepared to handle that load.
3-tab shingles advantages:
- Once again the question is asked, what is the price difference between a three tab shingle and architectural? Well, as previously stated, this is where 3-tab’s biggest advantage lays, as they are still cheaper than architectural shingles.
- They also do not weigh as much because they aren’t made of the same amount of material. 3 tab shingles usually weigh 240 pounds per Sq m, whilst architectural shingles are set at about 340-440 pounds per Sq m.
- They are still the more common choice used in many residential properties.
3-tab shingles disadvantages:
Durability factor, which results in the need for replacement much sooner than architectural shingles.
- Flat appearance, which aesthetically tends to be less preferable compared to dimensional shingles.
So, in conclusion if we are to go back to the initial question if 3-tab shingles are the same as Architectural? The answer is a most definite no. As you have seen in our 2 cents on the great “3-tab shingles vs. architectural shingles” debate.
Whichever alternative you pick, there are many advantages and disadvantages for each type of asphalt shingle. As it all depends on what makes the most sense for your style and budget.
But for all the home owners out there who simply want to know, what is the price difference between a three-tab shingle and architectural? Three-tab is cheaper but the architectural option while being the more pricey alternative, has the higher quality.