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Raleigh Roofing: Article About Architectural Shingles Versus 3 Tab Shingles

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Until relatively recently, all asphalt shingles were made in the 3 tab style. A 3 tab shingle is a flat, uniformly shaped shingle. The name comes from the cutouts along the lower edge of the shingle that makes each shingle look like three separate pieces.

Architectural shingles don't have the three cutouts, but they do have an extra layer of asphalt and granules on their lower edge. Architectural shingles resemble traditional wood shakes or tiles because they have a 3 dimensional contoured look and come in slightly different sizes and shapes. In some areas, people refer to architectural shingles as "Timberline" shingles because of the early popularity of GAF's first line of architectural shingles.

When installing a new roof, the most important factor in how well the new roof will perform is the contractor who installs the roof. A roof laid down by an experienced Raleigh roofing contractor will perform better and last longer than a roof laid down by an amateur. The choice of shingle is more about the look the homeowner wants than about the performance of the roof.

However, there are differences between 3 tab and architectural shingles other than their looks. Architectural shingles are significantly more expensive than 3 tab shingles. They are also significantly heavier than 3 tab shingles. A house with a roofing deck that cannot support a heavy roof will need to be done in 3 tab shingles.

The roofing contractors at Otto's Exteriors of Raleigh can assist you with any questions regarding metal roofing or gutters.

Due to their extra layer of asphalt and granules, architectural shingles last longer than 3 tab shingles. They are more resistant to curling and take longer to lose all of their protective granules. The longer lifespan of architectural shingles may more than offset the higher upfront purchase price in comparison to 3 tab shingles. A house with a handsome architectural shingled roof may also gain value versus a house with a basic 3 tab shingled roof.

When selecting a shingle, the manufacturer's warranty on the lifespan of the shingle provides some information about how durable the shingles are. Most architectural shingles are given a "lifetime" warranty. In general, a thicker, more expensive shingle will last longer than a cheaper, thin one.

Other considerations when selecting a shingle include the local weather conditions. If the area has heavy windstorms and hailstorms, selecting a special impact resistant shingle may allow for significant savings on home insurance costs. Special "cool roof" architectural shingles are also available that can significantly reduce air conditioning costs. However, if the bottom line concern is to install a roof at the lowest upfront cost, 3 tab shingles are probably the best option.

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