In recent years, roofing materials like metal and tile have become more popular. However, asphalt shingles are still considered the top choice. People often assume they are a low-budget option or have a really traditional look, but in fact, there's more variety in asphalt shingles than you might realize. When considering whether asphalt shingles are right for your home, it is better to think of them as existing in three different levels of quality. Learn about all three levels below.
Level 1: Standard 3-Tab Shingles
These are the shingles that typically come to mind first when you think about asphalt shingles. Each sheet of shingles has three tabs, which lie side by side. Three-tab shingles are one of the most affordable roofing materials, and they offer a decent level of durability in most moderate climates, although they will be damaged quite quickly in overly hot, window, or icy areas. Their appearance is also rather plain, although companies have begun to make them in a variety of interesting colors.
Level 2: Dimensional Shingles
Dimensional shingles, which are also known as architectural shingles, cost a bit more than 3-tab shingles, but they come with a much higher level of durability and attractiveness. These shingles have tabs of various widths and sizes, which causes water to run off them more effectively. They're not caught by wind as easily, and ice can't work its way under them as easily, either. Architectural shingles give a roof a more modern, textured look, which is popular among homeowners. They come with good warranties, stand up to wear, and are overall a smart choice for most homeowners with a moderate budget.
Level 3: Luxury Shingles
Here's where things get fancy. Luxury shingles cost a great deal more than architectural shingles. They're just about as durable as architectural shingles, but they have a more refined appearance. Some are made to look like cedar shakes, and others are made to look like slate. They are easier to install and maintain than cedar or slate, which is why many homeowners pick them over these materials. Luxury shingles can be carefully coordinated to match the color scheme and style of any home.
Before you write off shingles as an old-fashioned or cheap option, consider the information above. While 3-tab shingles are a smart roofing choice on a tight budget, architectural and luxury shingles are a higher-end option that offers just as many benefits as today's other popular roofing materials. Contact asphalt shingle roofing contractors to learn more.