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What Are Architectural Roof Shingles

What Are They Made Of

Architectural shingles vs Metal roofing: Which Roof is Best?

Architectural shingles have a much heavier mat base than regular asphalt shingles. This is why they are much stronger. The base is a mixture of asphalt and fiberglass . Colored mineral granules are layered on top and the backs are treated with a special coating. There has been consistent research to improve the quality and expand the number of textures available. Since the Seventies, when the architectural shingle was first introduced. Today, there are many new kinds available, and a wide selection of colors and textures. Some are patterned to look like slate, tiles, and even Cedar shakes.

Need Help Finding The Right Color For Your New Roof

Theres so much more to think about than just picking the right color to match your style of home, but that remains among the top considerations for homeowners.

Here are some tips on how to choose the right shingle color. We invite you try out the IKO ROOFViewer® Interactive Roof Shingle Selector Tool to see how any of our shingles will look on your style of home and coordinate with other exterior elements. You can even upload a photo of your own home to try on different shingles.

Always look at actual shingle samples in various light conditions before deciding, just as you would look at paint samples when picking an interior color for your walls. An IKO sales rep or professional roofing contractor will be happy to help you. Just ask!

The information on this website is subject to change without notice. IKO assumes no responsibility for errors that may appear on this website.

IKO strives to accurately reproduce the screen images of the shingle swatches and house photos shown. However, due to manufacturing variances, the limitations of your monitor resolution and the variation in natural exterior lighting, actual colors may vary from the images you see. To ensure complete satisfaction you should make final color selections from several full size shingles and view a sample of the product installed on a home. Please refer to our Legal Notices for U.S.A. or our Legal Notices for Canada.

Asphalt Shingle Care And Maintenance

Here are the most common care and maintenance considerations:

  • General cleaning: The key to a good-looking roof is to keep it clear of debris and moss that holds water against the roof and causes staining.
  • Inspecting an asphalt roof: Inspect the roof twice per year and after major storms and straight-line wind events. Look for missing shingles, cupped shingles and shingles pitted or cracked by windblown debris or hail. Call your roofing contractor when you see roof damage.
  • Preventing damage from within: A properly vented attic prevents a buildup in the attic of heat and/or moisture that will destroy a roof and shingles prematurely. Your roofing contractor can advise you whether your attic is adequately ventilated and, if not, what should be done.
  • Preventing ice dams: A properly insulated attic is the key to preventing ice dams. Dams occur when heat melts ice on the roof. Melted water runs down to the overhanging eaves where it quickly re-freezes and causes a dam that forces the melted water to back up under shingles where it can seep into the roof deck and cause leaks, rot and mold.
  • Preparing for winter: Bring attic insulation up to the recommended level. Inspect the roof and clear away debris. Clean out gutters where ice might otherwise accumulate and result in hanging icicles, gutter damage, water overflow and resulting leaks and seepage inside the house through the walls.

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Are Architectural Shingles Worth The Extra Cost

There are a few reasons that homeowners consider architectural shingles to be worth the extra cost. They are more expensive than their cheaper traditional asphalt shingles counterpart, however they have an average of a 6% return on investment for your homes value and outlast traditional shingles with a 30 to 50 year lifespan. Architectural shingles are the standard for high end homes and they just look better than regular shingles.

Style And Return On Investment

GAF Timberline HDZ 33.33

Architectural shingles were developed in the 1970s as upscale home finishes. Over time, they have become more widely used because their textured, high-end appearance is available at a reasonable price point. Additionally, a nice looking and dependable roof can boost your homes value and return nearly 72% of your investment. For more information, check out our previous post on how a new roof can increase home value.

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The Lifespan Of Architectural Asphalt Shingles

The lifespan of a roof is the number of years you get out of it. As long as your roof is properly installed and properly ventilated, it will get as close as possible to its maximum lifespan.

With that in mind, architectural asphalt shingles have a lifespan of around 30 years. But how close will they actually get to that 30-year mark?

A good rule of thumb is that architectural asphalt shingles should last around 80-85% of their maximum lifespan due to the factors that impact the life of a roof. This means you can expect to get around 25-28 years of life out of architectural shingles with proper roof installation and adequate attic ventilation.

Composition Of Architectural And 3

Both architectural and 3-tab shingles are composed of asphalt as well as fiberglass with a mat type backing, a top layer of granules and adhesives for adherence. The differences between the two have to do with the overall quality and material input. Architectural shingles contain a higher caliber of asphalt in contrast to 3-tab shingles. They also contain an increased number of granules on their surface, plus stronger adhesives and a base that is thicker and tougher. Architectural shingles are also infused with color distinctions that greatly intensify the look of the shingles. Added surface granules increase the chances of preserving this type of shingle for a longer period of time.

In contrast, 3-tab shingles are very flat in appearance, which is due to the fact that the tabs are of the same size and shape and are evenly placed in rows. As with architectural shingles, 3-tabs are available in colors though the colors are less intense in their coloration and texture.

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Pros And Cons Of Architectural Shingles Vs Three

by saalfeld | Sep 23, 2019 | Roofing

Asphalt shingles are made from fiberglass layered between asphalt and ceramic covered granules. The result is a water-resistant coating that also deflects UV light. While this is the fundamental composition of asphalt shingles, there are many variations to consider.

Two of the most common varieties are architectural and three-tab shingles. If you are a new homeowner or renovating your roof on a budget, these are two options that may be worth your while. Here is a break down of the pros and cons of each shingle style.

The Warranties On Architectural Asphalt Shingles

Roof Shingle Install | New House Roof | Rustic Black Architectural Shingles

There are two types of warranties youll get for architectural shingles: a material warranty on the shingles themselves and a warranty on the roofing contractors workmanship.

The workmanship warranty you get depends on the local roofing contractor you hire and varies from company to company. On the other hand, youll have a couple of material warranty options on an architectural asphalt shingle roof.

Architectural asphalt shingles automatically come out of the package with a 30-year material warranty thats prorated after 10 years. However, if you use all of a single manufacturers roofing components for your roof system, you can qualify to get the enhanced warranty.

This 50-year non-prorated warranty ensures the manufacturer covers the architectural shingles and the rest of the roof systems components for the life of the roof. Be aware, improper roof installation and inadequate attic ventilation will void the enhanced warranty.

Thats why its crucial to hire a high-quality roofing contractor to install your architectural asphalt shingles.

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Itemized Asphalt Shingle Costs

If you like to itemize costs, then this list will help. When youre shopping for shingles, theyll often be priced per bundle. The term can be misleading.

Roofing material costs are discussed per square, meaning the amount of material required to cover 100 square feet of roofing.

Three-tab shingles are usually three bundles per square.

Dimensional/architectural/luxury shingles are thicker and heavier, so are usually packaged in four or five bundles per square. Be sure to multiply the bundle price by the number of bundles per square.


  • Three-tab shingles: $55-$95 per square
  • Standard dimensional shingles: $80-$125 per square
  • Luxury dimensional and premium designer shingles: $145-$280 per square


  • Roofing paper: $25-$35 per square
  • Starter strip/shingles: $0.35-$0.75 per linear foot
  • Drip edge: $0.40-$0.65 per linear foot
  • Ridge vent: $3.25-$5.00 per linear foot
  • Moisture barrier rolls $1.50-$2.75 per linear foot
  • Ridge/hip cap shingles: $2.85-$6.50 per linear foot
  • Roofing nails: $2.50-$4.50 per square

Finding The Right Match For Your Home

The suitability of each of these shingle varieties is also relative. 3-tab shingles are more economical in the short term, so they may be ideal for rental properties and budget homes. Architectural shingles may be a better choice for high-end homes, as well as for homeowners who value aesthetics and longevity over lower initial costs.

The team at Spicer Bros. Construction can help you determine which asphalt shingles might work best for you. Dont hesitate to give us a call at one of the numbers below. You are also welcome to contact us online for further details.

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Redo Your Roof: Traditional Asphalt Vs Architectural Shingles

If youve begun thinking about replacing your roof, chances are youve encountered quite a few options. From asphalt to metal, from designer shingles to flat roofing, there is a whole gamut of roofing materials and types to choose from. But when it comes down to it, most homeowners are looking to stick close to what they know, so asphalt is still the most common material consumers select.

Even if youve settled on asphalt, you may have noticed that there are now more asphalt roofing materials than ever on the market. Today, wed like to highlight the main differences between traditional asphalt shingles and architectural shingles.

Traditional Asphalt Shingles: Overview & Benefits

There are numerous benefits to choosing traditional asphalt shingles for your new roof. They are durable and energy efficient, and they are the most affordable option on the market. Additionally, you can find traditional asphalt shingles in a wide variety of colors and styles. Installation of this option is quick and easy, and repairs are generally simple, too!

Architectural Asphalt Shingles: Overview & Benefits

The contoured look of architectural shingles is not just for show. The benefits of this style include increased durabilityreflected in longer warrantiesand better wind resistance. But the aesthetic impact is important too, as it adds to your homes curb appeal.

Making the Right Choice for Your Roof

Roof Replacement Roi: Cost

Architectural shingles roof, Architectural shingles, Roof architecture

The national average cost-to-value return when a house is sold within the first ten years of replacing asphalt shingles is about 70%. Tips for getting the best ROI include:

  • Use a grade of shingle consistent with neighborhood standards
  • Avoid unusual colors
  • Choose roofing from one of the top brands a brand potential buyers are likely to know rather than a small brand that might raise concerns
  • Choose a material with a transferable warranty

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For New Roofing On A Budget

Three-tab is a better option for tight roofing budgets. You may find your home remodel draining your wallet and need a whole roof on top of other budget constraints. With 3-tab, you might spend 50% less than the cost of architectural shingles, with the exception of regular asphalt repair costs.

One square of asphalt roof shingles covers 100 square feet. Asphalt is the least expensive type of shingle, and 3-tab installation makes it more affordable, typically costing $270 to $340 on average per square. Meanwhile, architectural squares go for $300 to $550 per square on average. This is likely due to the architectural shingles more attractive appearance. Three-tab is the most economical shingle on the market.

Professional qualified roofers are most likely to install and recommend architectural shingles to their clients due to the durability and security the product gives, which allows roofing contractors to honor their warranty, says Eric Gonzalez, Angi Expert Review board member and President of Regions Commercial Roofing.

What Are Architectural Shingles And Why Do You Want Them For Your Home

Architectural shingles are high-quality dimensional or laminated shingles that add beauty to your roof. They are made from a fiberglass mat base with ceramic coated minerals that are embedded in water-resistant asphalt. Several layers of material may be used to create the shingles.

New dimensional shingles are also made from a synthetic slate that looks like real slate. The synthetic slate shingles weigh less and do not require heavy support. Other contemporary architectural shingles simulate cedar wood shingles. Unlike cedar, these shingles are fire retardant.

The shingles are thicker and offer different color variations to add three-dimensional light and shadows to the roof. They may be installed in different sizes and with complementary colors for certain home designs. They weigh more than the standard three-tab shingles that are often installed in a flat brick-work design.

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Benefits Of Architectural Shingles

Architectural shingles provide many benefits over traditional 3-tab shingles. They usually provide better wind warranties, which can be a real advantage. When installed with the required combination of GAF accessories, GAF’s Timberline® HDZ Shingles may even be eligible for a wind warranty* with no maximum wind speed limitation. They also fit with most design styles. You can take your pick of shingles in several different colors and style variations. They look similar to wood or slate roof tiles, which fit many architectural styles and can increase the value and curb appeal of a residence in one easy installation.

These shingles have been increasing in popularity over the last 20 years, mainly due to their aesthetic appeal and their durability.

What Exactly Are Architectural Shingles

Architectural Shingles vs. 3-Tab Shingles

For decades, when people spoke of asphalt shingles, they typically meant the 3-tab variety. These more basic shingles feature a woven fiberglass mat embedded in asphalt and covered with protective mineral granules. Along the bottom of each shingle, youll find three tabs separated by quarter-inch grooves. Architectural shingles have now taken over as the most popular style. They are also called dimensional or compositional shingles. They feature a tough fiberglass mat laminated between two layers of asphalt and covered with protective mineral granules. This laminated design yields a thicker, more substantial product than basic 3-tab shingles.

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Guide To Laying Architectural Shingles

  • Written by Justin Stewart on Aug 20, 2009To ensure our content is always up-to-date with current information, best practices, and professional advice, articles are routinely reviewed by industry experts with years of hands-on experience.Reviewed by
  • 2,500-9,000

Architectural shingles are not difficult to install, look good and have a forty-year warranty. They are a high-quality shingle that is heavier than most and will last much longer than many other types. Another advantage of using architectural shingles is, they do not need any extra support, underneath the actual roof itself, which is why they are often used by building contractors, especially on larger homes. There are two main types of shingles available. The regular type, which must be nailed down, and an interlocking kind. Interlocking shingles are easy and fast to install.

Composite Plastic Roof Shingles

Composite plastic shingles are generally produced from recycled plastic materials. They are a way to get more life out of plastics and other materials that would simply be tossed out in most instances so they are a great environmentally friendly roof replacement option. You can expect to pay $4 to $6 per sq. foot for plastic shingles or $400 to $600 per square installed on a standard sized single story home.Composite plastic shingles can be designed to imitate stone slate tiles or even wood shakes. They are much lighter than slate or other roofing types which make them easy to install. Composite plastic shingles are relatively affordable, but they are not as long lasting as most other shingle types. Plastic roofing lasts from 7 to 20 years depending on the type of plastic you choose to install.

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What Are Architectural Shingles And What Sets Them Apart

Choosing the right shingle for your roof can be difficult. You have a wide variety of options in material, color, durability, and price. While several factors contribute to how long your roof will last and which roofing material is the right choice for your home, one thing is certain: you want your new roof to be a worthwhile investment, enhancing the longevity, look, and feel of your home. Today, well discuss how architectural shingles can help you meet this goal.

Are Architectural Shingles Worth The Cost

Architectural Shingles Austin Tx

Homeowners looking at roofing options often ask: with all the hype about architectural shingles, are they worth the extra cost? In a word, yesthe benefits of architectural shingles make the extra cost more than worth it. Why exactly are architectural shingles worth the extra money? Architectural shingles have many benefits, including better curb appeal, improved wind resistance, and a longer manufacturer warranty.

Architectural shingles are also known as laminated, composite, or dimensional shinglesso called due to the three-dimensional appearance they provide.Both three tab and architectural shingles are types of asphalt shingle. The key distinction between the two is that architectural shingles are constructed with a thicker layer of a more refined type of asphalt, which provides a number of added advantages.

Architectural shingles are, however, heavier than the three tab shingles, which means they are able to withstand higher wind speeds. In fact, some architectural shingles can withstand wind speeds up to 130 mph, while a regular three tab shingle is much more susceptible to being damaged or torn off by the wind.

Lastly, architectural shingles are worth the cost because they come with a great warranty. Ranging from 35 to 45 years , all architectural shingles come with some kind of valuable warranty that is often much longer than a three tab shingle warranty.

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