Whether you’re building a new home or replacing your roof, you may be wondering what types of roofing products will offer you the best combination of quality, durability, and long lifespan. A new roof is one of the most important and expensive home improvements that you will ever make – so it’s important to choose the right product.
So, in this article, we’ll take a look at what asphalt shingles are the best quality. We’ll also discuss wood shakes and wood shingles, and some of the other roofing materials you can choose from as an alternative to shingles. Let’s get started now.
Understanding The Different Types Of Asphalt Shingles
Asphalt shingles are definitely the most common types of shingles on the market, and the most popular type of roofing product. These roof shingles have low installation costs, and can be installed by just about any roofing contractor, so asphalt shingles are usually the best if you’re on a tight budget for your roofing system.
However, not all asphalt shingles are built alike. There are three primary types of asphalt shingles on the market today, as follows:
- Three-tab asphalt shingles – These are the most common and least expensive type of asphalt shingles used in building construction and roofing today. Three-tab asphalt shingles are made from a durable fiberglass core, which is coated with asphalt and mineral granules.This type of shingle is very lightweight and easy to install. You can recognize a three-tab asphalt shingle roof by its clean, horizontal appearance. The roof will appear “flat” because there is no overlap between the shingles. Three-tab shingles are available in just about any colour you can imagine, so it’s easy to choose the right material for your aesthetic needs.However, due to their thin design and the lack of overlap, three-tab asphalt shingles are usually not the most high-quality roofing shingles on the market. Roofs made of three-tab shingles usually last only about 20 years, though higher-quality products may be able to last longer with proper care and regular inspections.In addition, three-tab asphalt shingles are quite lightweight, making them susceptible to “blow-off” from high winds, and more vulnerable to ice damming. They also lack great insulative properties, so you will need to add more insulation to the interior of your attic, your energy efficiency will suffer.
- Architectural shingles – Luxury asphalt shingles are also sometimes called “architectural shingles” and are much higher quality than three-tab shingles. They are designed to replicate the appearance of natural cedar shakes and slate roofs, while costing only a fraction of the price, due to their inexpensive composition, and the ease of installation compared to slate and other more expensive products.This type of shingle is also sometimes called a “laminated” shingle, because it is composed of several layers of asphalt, often wrapped around a dense fiberglass core. This makes architectural shingles more durable and resistant to wear, and inclement weather conditions like high winds, and ice dams.If you’re looking for the very highest-quality asphalt shingles, you’ll definitely want to look into this type of product. Architectural shingles are the best of the best when it comes to asphalt roofing, offering superior durability, longevity, and a more pleasing appearance compared to both multidimensional shingles and three-tab asphalt shingles.
- Premium or “designer” shingles – Designer shingles are actually a subset of architectural shingle, and are the most expensive – but most high-quality – type of asphalt shingle that you can buy. They are often available in unique shapes and styles that mimic tile roofs, and are designed with specialised coatings and compounds that maximize durability. It’s not uncommon for a designer shingle roof to last more than 30 years.
If you are looking for the very best quality, you’ll definitely want to invest in architectural shingles or premium shingles. However, today’s three-tab shingles also offer great performance at a low price – and if you’re on a budget, a three-tab roof may be a better option.
Alternatives To Asphalt Roofing Shingles
Not sure that you’re interested in asphalt roofing products? Here are a few top alternatives to asphalt roofing shingles.
- Wood shakes and shingles – Wood shingles and shakes are usually made of cedar or redwood. They’re expensive, but can last more than 50 years, and add a unique look to your roof.
- Terracotta roof tiles – Made of natural clay, terracotta roofs have a lifespan of up to 100 years with proper installation, though they can be difficult and expensive to install.
- Metal roofing – Metal roofing is very versatile and can be used on roofs of any pitch, including a flat roof. Steel, copper, and zinc roofs are available, which can easily last 50+ years, and have low maintenance requirements and high energy efficiency.
- Cement tile – Made from cellulose and cement, these artificial slate tiles can be installed for a fraction of the cost of natural slate, and offer comparable benefits, but with a shorter, 50-year lifespan.
Explore All Of Your Roofing Options With City2Surf Roofing!
Whether you’re interested in asphalt shingles, slate roofing, wood shakes, or any other roofing material, get in touch with City2Surf Roofing right away. We have decades of combined experience working with roofs of all types – and with a free consultation, we can recommend the roofing material that’s right for you based on your budget, the shape, style, and size of your home, and a number of other factors.