The composition shingle is the most widely used roofing material in America and is commonly known as an asphalt shingle. Asphalt shingles have a fiberglass core and are impregnated with asphalt and then coated with mineral granules to add color and texture. There are two main types of composition shingles.
- Three-tab composition shingles are the most economical shingle available. They typically carry a 25-30-year manufacturer’s warranty, as well as a wind warranty of up to 70 mph, if installed to manufacturer’s specifications. Many customers choose three-tab shingles because they are economical, come in a range of colors and are readily available. Disadvantages include a shorter life expectancy and an inability to hide any defects in the roof framing. Click here to see the different colors available.
- Architectural/laminated shingles begin with much of the same construction as a three-tab shingle but have an extra layer of material laminated to the exposed portion of the shingle. This additional layer makes the shingle thicker, longer lasting and gives it a more dimensional look. The standard laminated shingle usually carries a limited lifetime manufacturer’s warranty, as well as a wind warranty of 120 mph, if installed to manufacturer’s specifications. The primary advantages in using a laminated shingle are its longer product life and its more pleasing aesthetics. Unlike three-tab shingles, the appearance of the laminated shingle does not show repeating patterns making it much more successful in hiding defects in the roof deck.
Hail/impact-resistant shingles are produced by several leading manufacturers. Impact-resistant shingles come in laminated-style shingles. They are designed to resist damage from impact and high winds (up to 130 mph, depending on manufacturer). For shingles to be classified as impact resistant they must meet stringent (Class 4) standards set by the Underwriter Laboratories (UL) and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Many insurance companies offer discounts on homeowner policies for installing impact-resistant shingles on your home. Though an initially larger investment, the cost of impact-resistant shingles may be offset over time by the insurance premium discount. Most impact-resistant shingles carry a limited lifetime manufacturer’s warranty. The shingles do not appear different from the standard laminate shingles.
Energy Star Rated composition shingles are installed for homeowners interested in a roofing system that will reduce energy consumption and costs. These shingles are designed to reflect sunlight and reduce heat buildup in the upper reaches of the home and attic. These shingles look the same as the laminate shingles mentioned above and typically carry a limited lifetime manufacturer’s warranty. Although more costly than standard laminated shingles, Energy Star Rated composition shingles do come with extra benefits. At times, they may qualify for a governmental tax credit, and they have much greater potential for reducing home-energy consumption and costs. Shingles must be rated by the Cool Roofing Rating Council (CRCC) and ENERGY STAR before being certified as Energy Star Rated composition shingles.
There are a variety of specialty shingles in addition to three-tab and laminated available in today’s market. These roofing materials allow you to create a different look and feel for your home and set it apart from other homes in your neighborhood. Please feel free to contact Exterior Building Solutions regarding some of the great roofing options available today.