Architectural Vs 3-Tab

A new roof is a big investment, and so you want to make sure you are selecting the right type of shingles to last for many years to come. A roof with missing or damaged shingles can create leaks, damaging your belongings during heavy storms or rainfall. When considering which type of shingles to use for your new roof, you’ll want to compare durability, costs, warranty options and the overall appearance. Today we’re going to discuss the difference between architectural and 3-tab shingles, to help you make an informed decision for your next roof. Both are types of asphalt shingles and offer different pros and cons to homeowners.


Architectural and 3-tab shingles are both types of asphalt shingles, and are relatively similar in composition as they are constructed from asphalt and adhesives. The outermost layer of both of these types of shingles is made from granules, with fiberglass used for the backing. However, the main difference in the composition of these two options is the quantity of material used in their creation, which affects their quality. Architectural shingles are much heavier and thicker than 3-tab shingles, making them a more sturdy and durable option for your home, and you’ll find that both the adhesives and asphalt used are of a higher quality.

Cost and Lifespan

When considering any work on your home, you want to consider both the cost and the work’s lifespan together. Both of these types of shingles have a relatively similar price point. Sometimes you may find 3-tab shingles are a little lower in price; however, they often need to be replaced quicker than architectural shingles. Expect architectural shingles to last up to 20 to 25 years, whereas 3-tab shingles may need replacing within 15 to 25 years.


The two types of shingles vary in their appearance, and it will be up to you to decide which will look better on your home. Architectural shingles give a more dimensional appearance to your roof, thanks to the multiple layers that are added to the base. On the other hand, 3-tab shingles are all of a single shape and size, giving them a flat appearance.


Along with the lifespan and cost, you’ll want to ensure your purchase comes with a respectable warranty. With their shorter expected lifespan, you can expect 3-tab shingles to have a shorter warranty, usually of up to 25 years. If you are looking for a lifetime warranty, choose architectural shingles, which often come with a 45 year or lifetime warranty included.

Protection from Wind Damage

If you are particularly concerned about the risk of wind damage, you’ll want to consult the wind resistance ratings before choosing your new shingles. 3-tab shingles are usually rated up to 60 miles per hour, but if this is a particular area of concern for you, architectural shingles will offer protection for between 80 and 120 miles thanks to their high quality and thickness.

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