Consumer Reports tests best roofing shingles

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- If your home's roof is twenty years or older or leaking, you may need a new one. You might also need to replace your roof if your shingles are cracked, curled or blowing up or off in the wind.

The good news is Consumer Reports just put the most popular kinds of shingles to the test.

"A lot of people aren't excited about getting a new roof. They want to get new kitchens, new bathrooms. When it comes to a new roof it's just a big expense," said roofer Michael Casolaro.

A new roof can cost thousands but it may be a necessary expense before more damage is done. To help out homeowners CR tested different types of asphalt shingles.



"We tested three tab shingles which are kind of your standard shingle most people go with. We tested architectural shingles which offer a little bit more layering, a little bit more material at a slightly higher cost and finally multi-layered architectural shingles which offer significantly more material, a much more layered look but come at a significantly higher cost," said Misha Kollontai, Consumer Reports tester.

The pricier, multilayered architectural shingles came out on top for performance.

CR recommends the Owens Corning Berkshire Collection, at $225 per square, which is enough material to cover 100 square feet. But that doesn't mean you need to spend that much.

The Atlas StormMaster Slate Three-tab shingles performed very well in CRs tests and cost less, $135 per square.



For even less, consider the Tamko Heritage architectural shingle. It's about $71 per square.

And while buying good performing shingles is important, so is hiring a reputable contractor to make sure they're installed correctly.

Also check the fine print on the warranty. Some manufacturers provide reimbursement only for the depreciated value of the shingles themselves.

The best warranties cover full replacement costs for new shingles and even the labor. To see if you might need a new roof, click here.

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