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Architectural shingles are likely on your radar if you’re a homeowner considering new roofing shingles. These premium asphalt shingles can go far beyond the look of traditional 3-tab roofing; architectural shingles offer excellent durability and visual appeal and can increase your home’s resale value. This guide will dive deep into what defines this roofing material, the pros and cons, costs, and other vital considerations. Read on or contact RoofPRO today to learn more! 

What are Architectural Shingles?

Architectural shingles are also known as dimensional or laminated shingles. They’re manufactured from the same base materials as standard asphalt shingles, with some key differences: 

• Multiple layers – Architectural shingles have two or more layers bonded together. The top layer provides artistic flair, while the bottom layer(s) offer durability and water resistance. 

• Thicker design – Architectural shingles are nearly double the weight of basic 3-tab shingles. This makes them more durable and weather-resistant. 

• Dimensional appearance – Architectural shingles have depth and texture to create visual appeal and shadow lines. This limitless design potential mimics the look of wood shake, slate, and tile roofs. 

Beyond the construction, architectural shingles come in various colors, styles, and patterns. The combinations are virtually endless to complement any home exterior! 

Architectural Shingles vs. Other Shingles

Determining the optimal roofing material for your home involves weighing many variables. Like a complex puzzle, each type of shingle or tile brings distinct advantages and disadvantages for you to analyze. As you explore your options, it’s crucial to avoid tunnel vision; cast a wide net before zeroing in on a specific roofing solution. 

Architectural asphalt shingles have surged in popularity thanks to their versatility. But how do they compare to roofing materials like 3-tab shingles, wood shakes, metal, slate, or tile? The choice ultimately comes down to aligning your priorities, needs, and expectations. Exploring the pros and cons across roofing material categories will enable a decision that maximizes satisfaction for years to come. 

Three-Tab Shingles and Other Asphalt Roofing

The most common shingles are basic 3-tab asphalt roof shingles. Three-tab shingles have a single layer bonded to the asphalt-soaked felt below. While three-tab shingles are inexpensive upfront, architectural shingles provide greater curb appeal, life expectancy, and wind resistance.

Wood Shingles

Cedar and other wood roof shingles provide a classic, rustic look. However, they require more maintenance and carry a shorter lifespan than architectural asphalt shingles. Wood is also prone to mold, algae, cracks, and moisture damage if not properly maintained. Poor fire resistance is another downside of natural wood roofing! 

Concrete or Tile Roofing

Concrete and clay tile roofing offer incredible longevity – up to 50 years if maintained properly! They provide a handsome, Old World look but at a steep installation cost. The weight of concrete or tile also can require a roof deck reinforcement by a professional roofer. 

blue architectural shingle roof

What are the Benefits of Installing Architectural Roofing Shingles?

Architectural shingles offer many noteworthy advantages that explain their popularity. But some benefits are more evident than others. It pays to dig deeper beneath the surface. Beyond the aesthetic advantages, here are some of the significant benefits that make new shingles a sound investment for your Maryland home. 


The multi-layer bonded design and heavier weight of the material result in superior durability and weather resistance. Architectural shingles better withstand impacts from hail, branches, and other hazards. The expected lifespan ranges from 30-50 years, depending on the manufacturer’s warranty period. Proper installation is critical, but architectural shingles are built to last decades longer than basic 3-tab shingles in all climate conditions. 

Resistant to Water Damage

Inclement weather is no match for architectural shingles; the laminated layers provide exceptional water resistance. Special waterproofing sealants are also used during manufacturing. This results in less water seepage into the roof deck than other asphalt shingle options. Less water penetration means your roof is safer from rot, mold, and structural issues over the long run! 

Boost Your Home's Curb Appeal and Value

One of the biggest motivations to upgrade to architectural shingles is aesthetic appeal. There are endless colors and patterns available; dimensional styles like timberline or shakes can recreate the rustic look of wood or slate roofs. Advanced designs of some shingles mimic expensive tile roofs for a fraction of the cost. Contemporary styles with bold designs or muted earth tones can complement all home exterior palettes. 

Beyond just beauty, installing architectural shingles instead of basic 3-tabs can increase your home’s value! Curb appeal matters, so your roof’s visual impact makes a big difference when selling your home. 

architectural roofing

Additional FAQs About Architectural Shingles

When considering a new roof, you likely still have lingering questions about architectural shingles, even after weighing the benefits. The details matter when evaluating a significant home investment like new roofing! To provide well-rounded guidance, we’ve compiled answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we get about our architectural asphalt shingle roof services below. Our goal is to provide transparent insights into key considerations! 

How Much Do Architectural Shingles Cost?

Architectural shingles have a range of price points based on the manufacturer, warranty length, and designer features. On average, expect to pay $3-$8 per square foot installed. Despite the higher installation cost, the long lifespan of this roofing system offsets the initial costs over the years. Reach out to RoofPRO today to get a tailored estimate for your unique property! 

How Long Do These Shingles Last?

With proper installation and limited roof traffic, architectural shingles can last 30-50 years, depending on the specific warranty coverage and installation. Some manufacturers offer limited lifetime warranties, although it’s important to read the fine print on those statements. Regular maintenance, prompt damage repairs, and proper ventilation will maximize the roof’s longevity. 

How Thick Are Architectural Shingles?

The thickness of the shingle is not a significant determining factor in the performance of the shingle. Although architectural shingles are thicker than three-tab shingles, their additional strength comes from how they are made, their overlapping features, and adhesives.

Can You Use Asphalt Shingles on a Flat Roof?

Architectural asphalt shingles are designed for sloped rooftops only. A minimum pitch of 2:12 (about 10 degrees) is required for proper water runoff. Specialty products like TPO or EPDM rubber roofing are better suited for flat or low-slope roofs. The lack of slope causes water ponding issues with standard asphalt shingles; proper drainage is vital for a long-lasting flat roof. 

maryland shingle roofing

RoofPRO is a Top-Rated Contractor in Maryland

Selecting the right roofing contractor is as important as choosing the perfect architectural shingles for your home. Installation expertise and workmanship determine how well your roof performs and lasts. That’s why partnering with a reputable, local roofing company like RoofPRO can give you peace of mind! 

Roof Repairs, Maintenance, Installation, and More

As a homeowner, your roof requires varying levels of care over its lifetime. From storm damage repairs to replacing damaged shingles and installing complete roof systems, RoofPRO’s team has the mastery to address diverse roofing needs for property owners across the state. 

Additional Exterior Services for Homeowners

Curb appeal and home protection extend beyond your roof. That’s why RoofPRO delivers comprehensive exterior services to realize your home’s full potential! We can provide solutions for your property’s siding, roofing, windows, gutters, and more. Check out our full list of residential services here. 

Contact Us for a Free Architectural Shingle Roofing Estimate

Your roof is one of the most important investments for your home’s protection and enhancement. With RoofPRO as your contractor, you can feel confident getting the highest quality architectural shingle installation and exterior upgrades. Don’t postpone improving your home any longer! 

We make the whole process hassle-free and convenient from start to finish. Contact us today to schedule your free, no-obligation roofing estimate. We’ll come out and inspect your roof, recommend the perfect solution for your home’s style and budget, and provide a detailed quote with transparent pricing.