Three-Tab vs. Architectural Shingles: Their Differences

Your roof is your home’s primary protection from the elements. If it were possible at all, you would probably pay big bucks to install a roof that would last forever. But right now, that remains a dream.

Three-Tab vs. Architectural Shingles: Their Differences

You do have options when it comes time to replace a roof past its prime or one that has seen neglect and is thus no longer able to function the way it was intended to. Among your best options are three-tab or architectural shingles. The question is: which is better when you decide to replace your roofing? All States Home Improvement compares the two to help you make your decision.

Three-Tab Shingles

The “tab” in the name refers to the cutouts along the lower edge of these types of shingles, which give one shingle the appearance of three. A 3-tab shingle roof has a flat layer, so it doesn’t provide any sort of “dimensional thickness”. As a result, they are lighter. They also cost less than architectural shingles. With an average weight of 240 lbs per square, three-tab shingles can withstand a maximum of 60 mile-per-hour wind speeds.

Three-tab shingles have been in use for a long time and have been popular among American homeowners for their relatively low cost and ease of roofing installation.

Architectural Shingles

Architectural asphalt shingles are known by different names: dimensional shingles, laminated asphalt shingles and composite. Their origin can be traced back to the 1970s, when builders wanted to capture more high-end home markets. They were the answer to homeowners’s need for shingles that looked like cedar but performed like asphalt. They have no cutouts, but an additional layer of asphalt is laminated on their lower portion, which gives them the “dimensional” look they are popular for. The dimensional look is not for aesthetics alone, though; the sealant used to create the look also improves their waterproofing capability.

Due to the additional layers and bonding, architectural shingles weigh more than 3-tab shingles, at up to 440 lbs. per square. The added weight and durability, however, keeps this type of roof stable even against wind speeds of up to 120 mph. That being said, architectural shingles may not be ideal for low-sloping roofs, which are more vulnerable to rain with strong winds.

In the end, your choice boils down to a few factors: your roof’s slope, the roof weight your home’s foundation can support, the weather in you are and whether your priority is a lower initial cost or durability and aesthetics.

At All States Home Improvement, we can do a superior job of installing either three-tab or architectural shingle roofing. Give us a call today at (316) 444-1220 in Wichita, and let’s talk about the type of shingle roofing that works best for your home.

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"From start to finish the service and work was awesome. Pricing was up front and fair. All States Home Improvement is the place to go for all your projects."

Joe - Wichita, KS

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"Wes and the Team did a great job of estimating the job and delivered on time and within budget. Very professional explanation of the project and executed a whole new roof in one day with complete regard for protection of property and thorough cleanup. Well done!"

Jim - Wichita, KS

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"Job was done at a great price, the service and sales team were polite and professional, and the overall job was well done."

Toni - Wichita, KS

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