Steps for Installing Architectural Shingles

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Home renovation

Architectural shingles are asphalt shingles that have a more substantial base than traditional ones. They are typically more expensive, with a minimum warranty of 25 years [source: Fratzel]. However, you do not need to hire a professional to install them. Here’s how to install them yourself.

Tools and materials needed:

  • Architectural shingles
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Utility knife

Follow these steps:

  1. Ensure that the shingles in each row on your roof do not align with those in the previous row.
  2. Start by laying a row of shingles from the bottom left corner of the roof, with each shingle extending half an inch (1.27 cm) over the eaves. Nail down the shingles as you go along.
  3. Lay the next row of shingles directly on top of the first row, creating a two-tile thick row.
  4. Cut six inches (15.2 cm) off the first shingle in the left corner of the roof using a utility knife when laying the shingles for the top row. Place a complete shingle next to it and continue laying down shingles until you complete the row. Nail down the shingles as you go along.
  5. For the next row, overlap it with the previous row (which is double thickness) by half an inch (1.27 cm). Cut twelve inches (30.4 cm) off the length of the first shingle you lay and then lay down complete tiles until you reach the end of the row. Trim the last shingle to fit correctly.
  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 until you reach the top of the roof. Cut off six more inches (15.2 cm) from the first shingle of each row than you did in the previous row to avoid aligning shingles between rows. Eventually, you will start over with a complete shingle at the beginning of the next row. Keep repeating this process until you reach the top of the roof.
  7. Install the shingles on the other side of the roof in the same way.
  8. Overlap the shingles where both sides meet at the top of the roof. Nail down the shingles [source: Maki].


1. What are architectural shingles?

Architectural shingles, also known as dimensional or laminated shingles, are a type of asphalt shingle with a three-dimensional appearance. They are thicker and heavier than traditional 3-tab shingles, and often have a more unique and textured design.

2. What are the benefits of using architectural shingles?

Architectural shingles offer several advantages over traditional 3-tab shingles. They are more durable and can last up to 50 years, compared to 20-25 years for 3-tab shingles. They also have a better wind rating and are less likely to blow off during a storm. Architectural shingles also provide better insulation and can improve the energy efficiency of your home.

3. Can I install architectural shingles myself?

While it is possible to install architectural shingles yourself, it is recommended to hire a professional roofing contractor. This is because installing shingles requires specific knowledge and tools, and mistakes can lead to leaks and other problems. Additionally, professional installation typically comes with a warranty.

4. What is the cost of installing architectural shingles?

The cost of installing architectural shingles varies depending on factors such as the size of the roof, the type of shingles chosen, and the location of the home. On average, expect to pay between $350 and $500 per square (100 square feet) for installation.

5. How long does it take to install architectural shingles?

The installation time for architectural shingles can vary depending on the size and complexity of the roof, as well as the weather conditions. However, a typical installation can take anywhere from 2 to 5 days.

6. How do I maintain my architectural shingles?

To maintain your architectural shingles, it is important to keep the roof clean and free of debris. Regular inspections can also help identify any issues before they become major problems. If you notice any damage or missing shingles, it is important to have them repaired or replaced as soon as possible to prevent leaks and other damage.

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