Asphalt shingle roofs are one of the most popular roofing choices because of their affordability and versatility. However, asphalt shingles come in many varieties, including traditional shingles like 3-tab asphalt shingles and more design-forward shingles like dimensional asphalt shingles. If you are in the market for a new roof, check out these three types of asphalt shingles.

1. 3-Tab Asphalt Shingles

As the name suggest, 3-tab asphalt shingles consist of three asphalt shingles stuck together. They are typically made from fiberglass and mineral granules. Roofers often choose these shingles because they are the most affordable asphalt shingle option, and with good care, the roof should last about 20 years.

Unfortunately, while 20 years sounds like a lot, nearly every other roofing option lasts longer, including other types of asphalt shingles. These shingles have a shorter lifespan because overtime the oil in the shingles evaporates, which behind brittle shingles. Brittle shingles cannot protect a roof well, so they need to be replaced.

These shingles are also less resistant to some weather conditions. If you live in an area with lots of heavy winds, you may have to worry about 3-tab shingles becoming loose and falling off the house. While the shingles are designed to block wind, if wind does get under the shingles, it can cause major damage.

2. Dimensional Asphalt Shingles

Dimensional asphalt shingles are also known as architectural shingles. While 3-tab asphalt shingles lay flat on your roof, dimensional shingles are made of two layers of shingle bonded together, which gives them more dimension and drastically changes the look of your roof. The end result is an asphalt roof with the style of wood shingles.

Thanks to the double layers of shingles, dimensional shingles can last 40 to 50 years. Of course, this means they are a more expensive roofing option. However, because they are asphalt shingles, they are perfect for nearly any roof, regardless of the slope.

One downside is that the raised shingles create a lot of nooks and crannies, which can trap mildew, mold or another organic substance, which can increase the risk of rot and decay. If you maintain the roof well, however, the roof is less likely to warp, and the raised shingles better hide roofing defects.

3. Luxury Asphalt Shingles

Luxury or premium shingles also add dimension to the roof, but they do a better job of replicating other roofing materials, including slate and wood. This can save you tons of money, especially if you prefer the look of slate. Slate tiles are expensive and heavy, so your roof may need more support to hold up the heavy roof.

Luxury asphalt shingles are heavier than normal asphalt shingles, but they still work on many types of roofs. This extra weight, however, adds to the durability of the roof and makes it stronger against tornado, hurricane, or hail damage. The extra weight may make them a poor choice for roofs with low slopes, but your roofer can help you determine if your roof is strong enough to support the heavier shingles.

Naturally, luxury asphalt shingles are the more expensive asphalt roofing option, but they can also last up to 50 years with good maintenance. Because of their high cost, luxury asphalt shingles may be best if you have a period home that naturally has a different type of roof, such as slate or wood, but you don’t want or can’t afford those other materials.

Asphalt shingles are an affordable option, but traditional 3-tab asphalt roofs aren’t your only choice. You can boost the lifespan of your asphalt roof with dimensional or luxury shingles. They may add value to the home and even better protect your roof. If you would like more information regarding roofing materials or roofing in general, contact us at Precise Roofing & Contracting today.