Asphalt Shingles

Asphalt shingles are one of the most common types of roofing material. They are fairly inexpensive compared to other materials and are also easy to install. This makes them an attractive choice for the majority of homeowners. In fact, asphalt shingles account for nearly 75% of all roof installations. Recent developments over the years have increased the durability and performance of this material.

Organic and fiberglass are the two different kinds of asphalt shingles.

Organic shingles are an old form of asphalt shingle. These are often made from recycled paper, infused with asphalt and subsequently compressed under high pressure. Organic shingles are much more flexible than their fiberglass counterparts and also a lot more difficult to tear. This makes them easier to install during cold winter weather. Organic shingles are quite durable given their heavy weight which makes them ideal for houses in cold climate or subject to heavy winds.

Fibreglass shingles are a new, popular choice. The mat is composed completely of glass fibres (also known as composition shingles). Asphalt as well as mineral granules are coated on the surface of the mat. These shingles are lighter given they have a smaller content of asphalt, about 40% less than organic shingles. This makes them also a more environmentally-friendly choice. Given the lower asphalt content they are also cheaper than their organic counterparts. To install, an underlayment of asphalt felt needs to be installed before placing the fibreglass shingles.

Asphalt shingles come in two popular models: three-tab and architectural (sometimes referred to as laminated. Each model is designed uniquely and has different features.

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Three-tab shingles

This model is one of the most popular given that it is the most economical. This model is not that heavy and is highly effective for low sloping roofs. It is not very effective at protecting against high winds. If your location is prone to winds stronger than 60 mph, it is not recommended to install three-tab shingles.

Architectural shingles

This model is known for its design features. When put in place, the shingles have a dimensional or layered look to them. The layers of shingles are bonded with an asphalt sealant. They are heavy but as a result are highly protective against strong winds up to 120 mph. Given their layered look, they do a great job at hiding imperfections in your roof. This is an aesthetic choice which is becoming popular among homeowners even if they are generally 20% more expensive than three-tab shingles.

Overall, there are not many differences between three-tab shingles versus architectural shingles. When it comes down to it, both models use the same material. The fundamental difference between the two is that architectural shingles use more shingles. Many contractors will try to sell you on architectural (laminated) shingles since they will charge you more thus they will make more money on them. Is the increased thickness and durability of an architectural shingle necessary for your house? Does the visually appealing look of architectural shingles justify the increased cost? Those are some of the questions you need to ask yourself before deciding which model is right for you.

CertainTeed Roof Shingles

CertainTeed is an integrated exterior and interior building products manufacturer, specializing in products such as roofing, siding, fences, decking, windows, insulation and drywall. The company was originally founded in 1904 as a manufacturer of roofing products. This long history has led CertainTeed to become one of the leaders in roofing manufacturing.

They specialize in asphalt shingles and have recently expanded to solar shingle manufacturing. They have over 20 models of shingles which are each unique in their own way. Their models are grouped into four categories: Traditional, Designer, Premium Designer and Luxury. We will briefly discuss each one and their key features.


CertainTeed’s traditional shingle is your typical basic shingle which comes in a multitude of colors. There are four main models, the XT 25, the XT 25 Metric, the XT 30 and the XT 30 IR. The XT 25 models come with a 25-year warranty as opposed to a 30-year warranty for the XT 30 models. The XT 30 shingles are also built a little tougher and can withstand harsher weather and stronger winds. As a result, they come with a Class 4 impact resistance rating.


CertainTeed’s designer shingles are beautiful shingles made with blended colors. They come in the widest range of colors to suit any style home. The three models are the Landmark, Landmark Solaris and the Highland Slate. The Landmark Solaris has energy-efficiency properties and is Energy Star rated. They are reflective and can reduce the temperature of your home by 20% when the sun is shining strong thus reducing your energy bill. The Highland Slate is designed to mimic natural slate, with contrasting tones.

Premium Designer

CertainTeed’s premium designer shingles are a step-up from the regular designer shingles in terms of durability and style. These shingles come with a lifetime warranty. The Landmark Solaris Gold, Landmark Solaris GOLD IR and Landmark Solaris Platinum are all Energy Star rated and have the same reflective properties as the designer Landmark models. While the Gold series can achieve 40% solar reflectivity, the Platinum series can achieve 60%!

Also included in the premium designer series are the Hatteras and Independence models. The Hatteras shingle is an extra durable shingle which will give your home a rugged look. It can withstand winds of up to 110mph and includes dual self-adhering strips and an heavy-duty fiberglass mat. The Independence is a unique shingle in which each shingle is different with unique color blends. This will give your home a dimensional appearance that cannot be replicated with any other model.


The luxury line of shingles are CertainTeed’s most premium shingle. The Presidential Shake IR has the appearance of real wood shakes without the headaches of real wood shakes. This shingle is extremely durable with a Class 4 impact resistance rating and tow laminated layers of CertainTeed’s uniquely durable material. The Landmark TL is the top of the line of the Landmark series of shingles. It is made with three laminated layers of CertainTeed’s durable material.

The Carriage House, GrandManor and Symphony are the other luxury CertainTeed shingles. These three models are very unique in their own ways. The Carriage House is a very heavy shingle (355 pounds per square) and has the appearance of a scalloped slate. This is the perfect shingle for a steep roof as it has four layer coverage when installed. The GrandManor is another shingle made for steep-pitched roofs as it has five-layer coverage when installed. Random shadow lines give a natural slate appearance to your home and maximum curb appeal. The Symphony model replicates composite slate shingles. It is Class 4 impact resistant, beautifully crafted and Energy Star rated. What more can you ask for in a luxury shingle?

CertainTeed Warranty

The warranty on your CertainTeed shingles depends on which model you buy. The traditional shingles have 25 to 30-year limited warranties. The designer, premium designer and luxury shingles have lifetime limited warranties.

The limited warranty protects against manufacturing defects. If your shingles get damaged within the warranty period and it is due to a manufacturing defect, CertainTeed will repair or replace the shingles.

In addition to the limited warranty, CertainTeed offers their SureStart Protection. Since they believe their products are manufactured with the highest quality standards in mind, they offer non prorated protection in the immediate years following the installation of their shingles on your roof. With SureStart Protection, CertainTeed will repair or replace the shingles at no cost to you, including the cost of labor. For the traditional shingles, SureStart Protection is covered for a period of 3 to 5 years. For all other shingles, the period of coverage is 10 years.