What Are Composition Shingles?

Composition shingles are the roof shingles. These are the material used to cover the roof. This is achieved by laying down overlapping individual elements. The typically rectangular and flat material is laid down in an overlapping pattern. They are laid down on the roof from bottom to the top which helps in overlapping the joints below. The roof shingles can be of any of the materials such as the flagstone, fiber cement, plastic, slate, wood, metal and composite material. In Europe and Asia, the roof covering ceramic roof tiles are still called tiles however the term roof shingle is more popular in the United States.

Composition Shingles Overview

Roof Shingles have always been the most important aspect of the architecture of the building. The roof shingles are highly visible from even a great distance therefore they play a great part in the colors, texture and the pattern of the aesthetics of the building. For the more traditional buildings the material used for the roof shingles is mostly locally available. However, selecting the type of roof shingles before construction is very important as the type of the roof shingle affects the construction method as well as the roof pitch. Solid sheeting on the roof is required for certain type of the roof shingles while there are other types that can easily be installed on the lath on the roof top without any hassle.

The roof shingles are installed by starting from bottom to the top. The benefit of starting from bottom is that every layer added on top covers the joint below by overlapping it thus prevent any king of leakage. The rain water runs smoothly down the shingles without penetrating into the roof. However, the installation of the roof shingles on top of a protective layer of a material such as the asphalt perform better than those without it because this material makes sure that no leaks occur from the directional rain fall and thus providing extra insurance from the leaks caused by the snow and the ice dams in the colder areas.

At the ridge portion of the roof the roof shingles can either overlap on another or a roof cap can be used to cover them up and avoid any kind of leaks. The roof cover can of copper, lead or boards. The wood shingles and also the organic asphalt shingled are becoming unpopular as the roof shingles due to the fire hazards. One of the building code requirements is the non- combustible roof shingle or the one which have better fire rating therefore the fiberglass roof shingles are more popular among the building planners nowadays. AS none of the roof shingles are waterproof therefore to prevent the leakage 4:12 is the minimum requirement of the roof pitch if the additional underlayment materials are not used to make the building weather tight.

Composition Roof Shingles

Nowadays there are loads of materials available to homeowners so that they can choose anyone as their roof shingles. The modern roofing is the most important aspect of any houses which not only makes it wind and rain tight and keeps the energy costs down but also adds to the beauty of overall architectural design. The most popular roof shingles among the modern homeowners are the fiberglass composition shingles. The fiberglass composition roof shingles are the ones that make almost 85% percent of the roof shingles being used on the roof tops.

Fiberglass Composition Shingle

The type of the roof shingle which has the mat which is reinforced by the fiberglass and it is in the center of the shingle, mineral fillers are used to coat the shingle first which adhere to the fiberglass and after that it is coated with the asphalt which give the shingle the water proof property. After that the ceramic granules are embedded on top of the finished composition roof shingle.

Composition Shingles’ Types

There are three major categories of the composition shingles of the modern day.

3-Tab Shingles

The 3-tab shingles are the most common type of the composition shingles available today. They are the least expensive and are very easy to maintained shingles of all the composition shingles. These shingles appear as product of one layer that divides the lower half of the composition shingles in to three tabs and that’s why it’s called 3-Tab shingle. However, the easy to maintained and least expensive sound good but it has a catch that it comes with warranty of least years as well which means their normal life span is 20-30 years and they need replacing after that.

Laminated Shingles

These shingles are more popular than the 3-tab shingles as these are the upgrade to those shingles and offer the best of the quality in affordable range. These are also known as the dimensional shingles. They differ from the 3-tab shingles as there 2nd layer is fused with the base layer of the shingle and thus adding to the thickness of the shingle providing more safety against water. They have a life span of about 30-40 years on average.

Architectural Shingles

These are the best kind of compositional shingles. They offer the best quality and the life span as compared to the other types of the shingles. They are larger, heavier and thicker as compared to the other types and come in the form of slabs which are then laid down on top of one another. These shingles make the super strong roofing and they often contain the moss retardants to keep the roof safe from the moss which increase the life of the roof. These shingles have a life span of more than 50 years and sometimes even lifetime which is really good as you don’t need to worry about them for the rest of your life once you put them on.

Advantages of The Composition Shingles

Following are the few of the advantages of using composition shingles as the roof shingles of your house:


The composition shingles are affordable as compared to any other type of roof shingles out there. The 3 Tab shingles are the least expensive among the three composition shingles. The composition shingles are really easy to maintain and not only that they are pretty easy to replace therefore the cost of repair are less as compared to other shingles.

Highly Durable

As the life span of the composition shingle can be up to life time which means that they are highly durable and they can sustain the harsh conditions imposed but weather and the outside on the. The Architectural shingles have life span of about 50years however the asphalt shingles last for only 20 years’ maximum which is a huge difference. They are fire resistant and they prevent the heat from flowing outside therefore keeping the energy bills down. They are also moss resistant therefore they protect the roof from the harmful effect of the moss.

Variety in Texture, Style and Colors

Everyone one loves to design their house according to their taste. Everyone has unique selection of colors and textures however when it comes to selecting the roof shingles there is no much variety available to select from and thus the homeowners have to make sacrifice in the design there and thus they have design their house exterior around the type of roof shingles they going to use but with Composition Shingles they don’t have to make this compromise because these roof shingles come in different colors as well as textures. You can also up-size the roof shingle according to your need. These are the roof shingles that let you take full advantage of your architectural design and also compliments your landscape.


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