The choice of a cover material for the roof is often based solely on price, and this usually leads homeowners to the option of three-tab shingles. There are many other aspects to consider, however, including the look of the material and its weight. Long-term cost is rarely a factor, but it is worthwhile to investigate the lifespan of different roofing materials especially in cases where maintenance is difficult or expensive.
An increasingly popular choice for Miami roofing is the three-dimensional shingle, also known as architectural or laminate shingles. Though first introduced in the 1970s, they actually have several benefits over the flat, three-tab variety. A cost-benefit analysis of these choices can help save you frustration and money over the long-term.
Long-term Versus Short-term Cost
Three-tab shingles are the least expensive available running from $50-80 per 100 square feet and professional installation taking this up to $180-300 for the same area. This compares favorably with architectural shingles, which can be anywhere from 20-40 percent more expensive. This is only the beginning of costs, because repair and time until replacement is necessary must also be considered.
Three-tab shingles are usually sold with a 25-30 year expected lifespan. This assumes multiple inspections each year, following extreme weather and significant weather changes, and prompt repair of any damage. Most homeowners are incapable of carrying out the inspections and repairs safely, and hiring a professional can get expensive quickly, which means the lifespan is effectively reduced to 15-18 years on average. The 15-20 year warranties available on this product reflect this reality.
Architectural shingles typically come with 30-40 year warranties with longer ones available for algae-resistant shingles. They have lower maintenance requirements, due to the three-dimensional shape, and are far more resistant to wind damage and curling. Most manufacturers rate their shingles for winds up to 120 mph, and the resistance to curling is partly attributable to their superior heat resistance.
Three-tab shingles present a flat appearance that calls attention to any imperfection in roof structure. They are also ill-suited to complicated roofs with extraordinary features. Three-dimensional shingles, on the other hand, will hide beam buckling and other imperfections. They are generally preferred for complicated roof features, such as gables or hip roofs.
Finding room in the budget for Miami roof replacement is often difficult. Upfront sacrifices on cost can, however, lead to significant long-term savings.