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  • Tim Kraemer

Architectural Shingles vs Three-Tab Shingles

Architectural Shingles vs Three-Tab Shingles

The most common type of shingles used for roofing are asphalt shingles. Asphalt shingles are made from fiberglass which is layered between asphalt and ceramic granules. These materials make a water-resistant coating that also deflects UV light. This is the fundamental composition of asphalt shingles, however; there are two variations which are most commonly used: architectural and three-tab shingles. These are two options for shingles you should consider when renovating or building new.

Here is a breakdown of the pros and cons of each shingle style.


Architectural shingles are comprised of two asphalt shingle strips laminated together. This layering creates a shingle that is stronger to hold up against the elements. They are said to tolerate winds of 130 mph. Architectural shingles have minimum warranties of 30 years.

Three-tab shingles are thinner as they are comprised of a single layer of material. They can handle winds up to 60 mph. Three-tab shingles come with 20, 25, or 30 year warranties.


Architectural shingles come in different shapes and sizes which can create different colors, textures and dimensional looks.

Three-tab shingles come in one shape and size and have a flat appearance.


Architectural shingles typically run $35-$45 per bundle.

Three-tab shingles typically run $25-$20 per bundle.

Overall, our pick for shingles is architectural. Due to the customizable versatility, architectural shingles give you more freedom to make aesthetic choices for your exterior. If budget is of great concern, three-tab shingles are a good choice-but keep in mind though less in cost up front you will likely need to replace three-tab shingles sooner than you would architectural shingles.

Choosing shingles is just one of the many choices that come along with renovations or new build projects which is why we recommend using a general contractor for your building needs! If you are looking for a general contractor, contact us today!

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