Architectural Roofing Shingles Explained

Architectural roofing shingles are a type of dimensional roof shingles which are gaining popularity these days. Enhancements to building material has brought about a new dimension in the age-old asphalt shingles, which not only improves longevity and strength but also gives it a strikingly different look and feel. These innovations became grouped under a new title – architectural roofing shingles.

Other names given to this class of roofing material include dimensional shingles, laminated shingles, and composite roofing material. These rank among the highest quality material available to repair or replace your roof today. Composed of fiberglass base which is impregnated with granules of various minerals, architectural roofing shingles are also refined and water resistant.

Another comparable material used in roofing is synthetic slate. In appearance and texture, it remarkably resembles natural slate but is really an artificially crafted polymer that is specifically designed to be attractive, long lasting and handle easily.

Architectural roofing shingles can create the illusion of 3 dimensional roofing adding to the visual appeal of your building. Some architectural shingles resemble cedar wood shakes. Certainteed and GAF both produce such architectural roofing shingles that are thick and even have random irregularities to simulate the appearance of natural wood shingles.

A form of architectural roofing shingle that mimics slate roofs are the Symphony Slate and Grand Manor models in the Certainteed catalog. The biggest advantage of these architectural shingles is that they are light weight and do not carry any of the drawbacks of the heaviness of natural slate roofing. Chief among this is that they don’t require any strengthening of the underlayment or roofing frame as natural slate might.

Randomness in the color, texture and design elements add to the visual appearance of natural wood shingles. They are especially attractive on roofs with steep turrets, planes and gables. Hip and ridge pieces are available for most architectural roofing shingles. These accentuate the texture of shingles and complement them nicely.

Mimicking natural roofing shingles is not the only purpose of architectural roofing shingles. Some are specifically engineered to match the changing tastes of home owners. Re-sawn shake and weathered wood shingles are popular choices and even darker shades and terra-cotta tones are catching the fancy of contractors and home owners alike.

Architectural roofing shingles are thicker and heavier, running to 400 pounds per square or more. They weigh much more than typical asphalt shingles. They are also longer lasting and the warranty offered by manufacturers is therefore longer too. Architectural shingles also retain their pristine look for long periods, being resistant to algae and fungi which can cause dark streaks along roofing.

Architectural roofing shingles are coated with metals like copper and zinc granules. These help in controlling fungal or algal growth. Wind shear resistance is higher because of the thickness and weight. Fire resistance is another benefit for architectural roofing shingles, all of which combines to make them the intelligent choice of home owners who seek value for money.

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