When you are looking to replace your roof, one of the most important decisions you’ll make is what type of roofing shingles to choose. There are a variety of options available, each with its own benefits and drawbacks.
In this guide, we’ll take a look at some of the most popular types of shingles and compare them so that you can make an informed decision.
What Are Asphalt Shingles?
Before we compare the many types of asphalt roofing shingles out there, let’s first discuss what asphalt shingles are in the first place!
The phrase “asphalt shingles” is actually a bit of a misnomer, since these shingles aren’t made entirely of asphalt. Most are made with limestone that’s been crushed into a fine powder along with materials like fiberglass, crushed rock granules, and other materials.
They’re typically available in two forms – three-tab (the most basic shingles, with a very flat appearance) and dimensional roofing shingles (also known as architectural or laminated shingles). Architectural shingles are far more common these days, giving more texture and aesthetic appeal to a home.
Most asphalt shingles are rated to last between 25 to 50 years. However, for some homes and some types of shingles, this lifespan is much less due to factors like weather conditions and roof maintenance.
Which Roofing Shingle is Best?
Below, we’ll give you a brief overview of five of the top shingles manufacturers on the market.
GAF is one of the most well-known names when it comes to shingles. This company offers 50-year limited lifetime warranties and plenty of styles to choose from. Whether your home has a modern or historical design, GAF has shingles for you.
Not all GAF shingles are energy-star rated or weather-impact tested, so be sure to look at the specifications for each individual product, depending on what your needs are.
Some popular GAF roofing shingles include:
- Timberline Ultra HD
- Royal Sovereign
Atlas is another professional shingle company. Its shingles offer some of the best protection against the elements, with products rated up to 130 miles per hour. That’s great news if you live in a particularly windy area!
Not only that, but these shingles have algae resistance to help reduce unattractive streaking. Certain products (including those in the StormMaster line) are designed to hold up to heavy hail and wind, too.
Atlas sells slate, shake, and 3-tab shingles. The only downside of Atlas shingles is that some don’t seal as well in cold weather or can crack if installed over rigid foam insulation.
Malarkey is another famous brand. These roofing shingles are standard in the northwestern United States, known for their high algae resistance and patented nailing strips. Each shingle is uniquely constructed with SBS modifications or rubberization.
Popular Malarkey shingles include Dura-Seal 20 3-Tab Shingles and Legacy SBS Architectural Laminate Shingles. This company also sells solar reflective shingles. Compared to other brands, Malarkey doesn’t offer quite as much variety – but this manufacturer is truly about quality over quantity.
Perhaps one of the most significant advantages of Malarkey shingles is that most are protected by Scotchgard technology to reduce staining and algae build-up. Malarkey also includes a unique base layer of fiberglass in each shingle, helping to make it far more durable. Some shingles have an additional nailing area that makes them easier to install.
Another leading brand is CertainTeed. This manufacturer has some of the best warranties and customer service. Most roofing shingles are rated to last up to 40 years with the right maintenance.
CertainTeed products include:
- Presidential TL Tri-Laminate Shingles
- Landmark Architectural Laminate Shingles
- CT 20 3-Tab Shingles
As for disadvantages of CertainTeed, most come back to price. The shingles themselves can be costly, and for the longest warranty possible, you’ll have to pay for extensions.
Last but not least is Owens Corning. This company sells fiberglass products, including its famous line of asphalt composite laminated shingles.
Each shingle is constructed with Surenail Technology, which helps to ensure that your roof is fastened well and withstands extreme weather. Popular Owens Corning shingles include:
- Supreme 3-Tab Shingles
- Woodmoor Heavyweight Shingles
- Duration Architectural Laminate Shingles
Of these, Woodmoor Heavyweight Shingles are the most durable, with a 50-year limited lifetime warranty and a true roof life of up to 40 years with the right maintenance. Again, like CertainTeed’s shingles, Owens Corning shingles can be costly to install.
Which Roofing Shingle Manufacturer is the Best?
The short answer? It depends. All of the shingles we’ve described above are great choices – consider the pros and cons of each before deciding which is right for your roof.
If you’re in the market for a new roof, be sure to consider all of your options. Shingles come in a variety of colors and styles, so take your time and choose the one that best suits your home. And remember, if you have any questions or need help deciding which shingle is right for you, don’t hesitate to contact Ashton McGee Restoration Group.
As Minnesota’s leading general contractor, we’re happy to help you install a new roof that far surpasses your expectations. Our GAF certified team has exactly what it takes to complete the strongest and most attractive roofing project for you – no matter the size, scope, or style. We’re happy to consult with you on which types of shingles might be best for your home, too.
No matter what type of roofing shingles you decide to go with, we’ve got this, y’all. Check our roofing projects & call us to start working on your roof ASAP!