Architectural Shingles VS 3 Tab Shingles

For most people, buying a home is a huge feat. As a result, well-informed decisions have to be made to ensure that the home is efficient, comfortable, and well worth your investment. One way to do this is by considering roof replacement options.

When it comes to roofing, there are many options to choose from, and all the information can become overwhelming for you. With this article, only the most common shingles will be discussed. In the end, you will get to understand the difference between architectural and 3-tab roofing shingles; this will help you make accurate decisions.

3-Tab Shingles

These are asphalt-based traditional shingles. They are referred to as 3tab because of the three tabs they are made up of. Each of the tabs is about 12” wide. 3-tab shingles often have warranties ranging from twenty to thirty years.

3-tab shingles work by shedding water down to the next shingle directly below and they usually come in various colors.


  • They have a low initial cost.
  • They come in a variety of colors and styles.
  • The shingles are easy to repair.


  • As a result of its light weight and lack of thickness, it is unable to withstand harsh weather conditions.
  • They aren’t as popular as they used to be because people now want more durable shingles.
  • The 3-tab shingles have shorter warranties because they are not made to last as long.
  • Their appearance is flat, and this hardly makes it as attractive.

Architectural shingles

Architectural shingles are referred to as laminate or dimensional shingles. This is because of their dimensional appearance, which causes them to appear like tiles or wooden shakes. They are two shingle strips (asphalt) laminated together to create a kind of shingle that looks like wood shake roofs.

With architectural shingles, the tabs come in various color shades, sizes, and shapes; this is what gives the shingles their dimensional appearance.


  • Architectural shingles come with a higher warranty, up to a lifetime!
  • They are thicker, unlike the 3-tab shingles.
  • Because of their thickness, they are more resistant to harsh weather conditions.
  • They are gradually becoming more popular than the traditional 3-tab shingles.
  • When architectural shingles are correctly installed and then carefully maintained, they could enhance the value of your home.


  • Architectural shingles cost more compared to the 3-tab shingles.
  • They are heavyweight. But this is good (sometimes), except in cases where your house cannot withstand the weight of the shingles.

In choosing what shingles to go for, consider which would be more appropriate for your needs and your home, Also consider if this is a home you will live in for a long time or if it’s only for the short-term. Let your roofing contractor help you make the most informed decision, but keep in mind that whichever shingles you go for, there are always pros and cons.


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