What Type of Roof Shingles Are The Best?

Construction worker putting the asphalt roofing (shingles) with nail gun on a large commercial apartment building development

As a homeowner, it is a daunting task to replace the roof. As a home ages, the integrity of the roof begins to lessen as damage from dead tree debris, from storms, wind, changes in temperature wear it down over time. When it comes time to find the best material to replace the shingles on your roof, there are two major categories in which you can choose from, asphalt roof shingles and composition shingles.

What are the Differences Between Them?

It is important to know the differences of these shingles before deciding which is the best type of shingle to use on your roof, so you can meet your home’s needs.

Asphalt Roof Shingles are made primarily out of asphalt (hence the name), fiberglass and stone, or ceramic granules. These ingredients allow them to be not only affordable but also durable and incredibly versatile. They are easy to install, financially friendly, and are able to be recycled once you are ready to replace them.

Asphalt shingles are available in a variety of different colors and designs, allowing for you to pick the perfect aesthetic to match your home.  They even come in different designs, allowing your home to stand out from the others on the block.

Architectural and 3 tab-shingles are the more common types of asphalt shingles. Architectural is on the higher end, being a bit more fashion-forward than the 3 tab-shingles because it is available in different shapes and sizes.

The 3 tab-shingles is named because of its unique shape, in which a single tab is cut to look like three individual shingles, giving it a three individual shingle look, or a stacking effect. This is the most financially friendly of the asphalt shingles.

It is important to keep in mind, though, that asphalt shingles are susceptible to sudden weather changes and damage from wind by uplifting. Due to this, it is important to have at least annual maintenance on the roof. They are also not the most environmentally friendly, even though they are able to be recycled, as they are made out of petroleum by-products.

Composition Shingles have a fiberglass center that is reinforced with asphalt and other mineral fillers. This allows them to be lightweight, affordable, and easy to maintain. They are also available in different shapes, colors, designs, and styles, making them easy to match to the look of your home. Composite shingles are also long-lasting, having life-span of 20-50 years before needing to be replaced.

Aside from the clean professional look, composite shingles are also environmentally friendly, as they are usually made out of recycled material. They are also fire and impact resistant, adding for an extra measure of security for your home. They are lightweight, eliminating the worry that your home’s structural integrity will become unstable from the added weight.

composite tile close up, roofing texture, Close-up top above view with copy space for text

As with the asphalt shingles, composition shingles also come in different subtypes including architectural, laminate, and 3-tab shingles.

  • 3-tab shingles, same as the asphalt, it just gives is a stacked look.
  • Architectural shingles resemble slate or shake roofs.
  • Laminate shingles have two stuck together to give the roof a more dimensional/depth appeal, then just being a flat slope.

As with the asphalt shingles, composite shingles also have important information you should be aware of. Composites roofs are more expensive than the asphalt roofs and also require professional installation. They are also vulnerable to wind damage, but this can easily be repaired instead of replaced (cutting down on overall roof repair costs). Moss and mildew treatment is also required, as moisture can damage the shingles in humid temperatures.

What Do I Need?

While aesthetically, both types of shingles look amazing and can be made to fit whatever style you are looking for, the differences in financial commitment and location of your house can all factor into what type of shingle you are going to get for your roof. For example, if you live in an area where humid temperatures are a common occurrence, it probably isn’t the wisest option to go with the composite shingles, unless you were planning on paying for a moss and mildew treatment finish to avoid damage to the shingles. On the other hand, if you are an environmentalist, and are worried about the environment, paying the extra costs to get the composite shingles would be better for you, as they would align more with your values.

In reality, both types of shingles are great! It just depends on what you, as a homeowner are looking for. If you have anymore questions or need quotes on materials and labor, feel free to contact Mullins General Construction at (972) 535-8065 in Dallas, TX. We are dedicated to making sure you find the materials that are not only perfect for your home but also leaves your wallet and your frame of mind happy.