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Learning About Your Roof Options: Asphalt Shingles 101

Composition Shingles

Composition shingles are the best option if you are looking for an attractive look at an affordable price.

The two most common residential roofing materials are asphalt shingles and metal roof panels. As discussed in previous blogs, there are pros and cons to both. Metal roofs are considerably more expensive – about 30% more than asphalt shingles – but last 3X as long. Shingles are a desirable option if you don’t know how long you’ll be living in your home or if you wish to save oodles of money.

Shingles are by far the most popular roofing material for shingles.  When talking about roofing shingles, the type that most likely comes to mind are the plain, flat, 3-tab asphalt shingles.  They are cheap, but not always the best quality.  Fiberglass asphalt shingles are a better option.  They usually carry a Class A fire-resistance rating (the highest available), they resist high winds, and they come in a variety of colors and styles. There are many different composition shingle products to choose from, so it’s just your personal preference as to which is your favorite.

Composition shingles are relatively easy to install, and in some applications they can be nailed in place over an existing roof. They require low maintenance and can be walked on without severely damaging the material (though we do not recommend).  Whichever type of composition shingle you choose, you will generally be offered a 25-year to lifetime warranty for your roof which is another added benefit.

There are also a few negatives to composition shingles. They are not quite as durable as other roofing materials, such as metal or tile. Composition shingles don’t withstand wind as well as metal and are susceptible to algae growth. This is a problem if you live in a humid climate.  When hot, composition shingles can scar. This causes the shingles to become damaged and less attractive.  The most undesirable feature of composition shingles is the short lifespan. Composition shingles last about 15-20 years on average, meaning replacements will be a frequent occurrence compared to other roof materials.

Now that you are aware of both the pros and cons of a composition shingle roof, it’s up to you to decide what kind of roofing material to buy. The main question to answer is: Do you want to save money now on a roof that will last for less amount of time, or pay the extra cost for a long-lasting roof?


“Composition Shingles.” Residential Roofing. Web. 31 Aug. 2011.

Contact Lone-Star Roof Systems, LP or visit our office today!

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1511 South Texas Avenue, #172
College Station, TX 77840

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18476 State Highway 6 S.
College Station, TX 77845
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