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Consumer Reports: Time for a new roof?

Posted at 8:26 AM, Oct 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-02 11:27:13-04

TUCSON, Ariz. - It’s not the most glamorous renovation.

“A lot of people aren’t excited about getting a new roof," says Roofer, Michael Casolaro. "They want to get new kitchens, new bathrooms. When it comes to a new roof it’s just a big expense.”

A new roof can cost thousands but it may be a necessary expense before more damage is done, says Consumer Reports. It recently tested different types of asphalt shingles.

“We tested three three tab shingles which are kind of your standard shingle most people go with," says Consumer Reports Tester, Misha Kollontai. "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.”

CR performs a variety of tests to evaluate the strength of a shingle. An Instron machine helps testers assess whether a roofing material’s adhesive will stick or separate when strong winds hit your roof. It’s also used to see how much force it takes for a nail to rip through the shingle. And a weathering machine hits samples of the shingles with 500 hours of simulated sunlight and rain.

The pricier, multilayered architectural shingles came out on top for performance. CR recommends the Owens Corning Berkshire Collection. $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. 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 costs about $71 per square. And finally, says, CR, while buying a good performing shingle is important, so is hiring a reputable contractor to make sure the shingles are being installed correctly.

Consumer Reports says it’s important to check the fine print on the warranty for your roofing. For example some manufacturers only provide reimbursement for the depreciated value of the shingles themselves. The best warranties cover full replacement costs for new shingles and even the labor. To determine whether you may need a new roof, check out our video on line.