3-tab shingles became the standard roofing material in the 1950s. They are single strips of shingles with a single layer of asphalt. They have a flat appearance and have almost a 2-D brick pattern when you see them on a full roof. They got their name from how the shingle pieces are cut into three tabs per shingle (see below).
Asphalt roofing shingles are the most commonly used covering on residential properties in the market. Asphalt’s primary purpose in roofing shingles is to serve as a waterproofing agent. It also holds the granules in place and adds to the overall strength of the roofing shingle. The best asphalt will stay flexible and won’t dry out, become hard or grow brittle for the expected life of the roofing shingle. Read more about the different types of asphalt shingles below.