Replacing an existing roof or installing a new roof are significant projects. If you are a homeowner looking to upgrade your home, it is important to carefully choose the best shingles for the area you live in. When it comes to roof shingles, many people question – what is the difference between lifetime shingles vs. 30-year shingles?

Architectural shingles are a very common roofing option across the US. They come with either a 30-year or a lifetime warranty. The main differences, besides the warranty duration, are the warranty conditions and the price. Both options offer easy installation, wind and fire resistance, excellent durability, and little to no maintenance required. 

Let’s take a closer look at architectural shingles, lifetime and 30-year warranty, the difference between these two roofing options, as well as the overall importance of warranty.

What are Architectural Shingles?

Roofer - Glenelg, MDArchitectural shingles are one of the most common roofing options, not just in Maryland but throughout the US. Homeowners choose these shingles because they are easy to install, have excellent durability, require little to no maintenance to keep them looking great, and have wind and fire-resistant properties.

Maryland residents experience a wide range of weather conditions throughout the year, from rain and strong winds to snow and hail.  They need quality and durable shingles that can withstand severe weather conditions. Architectural shingles have superior durability and can withstand harsh weather. As a result, many homeowners in MD choose them when installing or replacing their roofs.

Architectural shingles are also known as dimensional or laminated shingles. They have two or more layers of shingles bonded together and a three-dimensional appearance thanks to the indentations all over the surface. The minimum warranty period of this roofing solution is 30 years, but it often comes with a lifetime warranty that lasts 50 years, which is much better compared to, for example, the old-style 3-tab shingles.

A wide variety of colors and subtle color patterns makes these shingles very popular among homeowners and prospective home buyers, and the textured appearance enhances the home’s curb appeal and can increase its resale value.

When installed correctly, architectural shingles can withstand wind speeds up to 130mph, which is perfect for areas with volatile weather. When you consider quality, durability, lifespan, and appearance, architectural shingles are definitely worth the extra cost they come with.

What are Lifetime Roof Shingles?

Lifetime architectural shingles are covered by a warranty that lasts 50 years.  During this period, shingles are covered 100% throughout the first decade of their lifespan.  The warranty is then prorated for the following four decades. 

These shingles have exceptional durability and can withstand harsh weather without any difficulties. Lifetime shingles are a perfect option if you are looking for a roofing solution that will last as long as the house stands.

What are 30 Year Roof Shingles?

30 year roof shingles come with a warranty of 30 years. They are an excellent option if you are thinking about roof replacement and want to ensure your new roof will last for three decades (as opposed to some roofing solutions with an average lifespan of 15-20 years). 30-year shingles boast excellent quality and durability, and they are perfect for areas with a wide range of weather conditions throughout the year.

What’s the Difference Between 30-Year and Lifetime Shingles?

If you are considering roof replacement in Columbia, MD, both options will protect your house from various weather conditions, help control the temperature in your home, and add a layer of character to it. However, it may be difficult to decide which of these two options to pick, and that’s why you should know the differences between them.

Although almost all shingles have limited warranties, these two types come with more specific ones. The warranty of 30-year shingles covers any defects that occur before and after they are laid on the roof, but it doesn’t cover the usual wear and tear caused by harsh weather.

On the other hand, lifetime shingles are manufactured using upgraded materials, and they can withstand anything a roof must endure, such as strong winds, freezing hail, heat waves, and downpours.

Also, lifetime shingles come with a higher price compared to 30-year shingles. As you can see, the main differences include warranty duration, price, and warranty conditions.

Are Lifetime Shingles Worth it?

If you are not sure whether to choose lifetime or 30-year shingles, your decision should depend on a few factors. The first thing you need to take into consideration is the weather in your area. Living in an area with fair and less extreme weather will allow you to maximize the longevity of your shingle roof, no matter which option you choose. On the other hand, if the weather conditions are harsh, lifetime shingles may be a better option because of extra durability and a wider variety of issues covered by the warranty.

Another thing to consider is how long you are planning to live in your current home. If you intend to live there for several decades, lifetime shingles are definitely worth the investment, as they will protect your home for many decades to come. However, if you plan to move away in a couple of decades, choosing 30-year shingles is a wiser decision as you simply won’t be in the same house long enough.

Finally, don’t forget to consider your budget before making a final decision. Both options are worth the price considering the properties they offer, and you can’t go wrong with choosing a quality product. However, since they are more expensive, lifetime shingles are simply out of the budget of some homeowners, and 30-year shingles may be the best these people can afford. A roof replacement budget can be a make-or-break factor when it comes to home improvement.

Why is a Roofing Warranty Important?

Replacing your existing roof or having a new roof installed is a huge investment, and you surely want to be protected in case something goes wrong. A roofing warranty protects you from any defects in the roofing materials or faulty installation. If a problem occurs as a result of these things, the warranty will cover it, instead of you having to pay thousands of dollars on repairs caused by improper installation or materials with defects.

When opting for roof replacement or installation, make sure you understand the coverages that come with the installation or materials. At Dunsmore Exteriors as local roofing contractors offer a variety of products and warranty options, and you should ask anything you want to know before choosing the best roofing solution that meets your needs.