GAF vs Certainteed Shingle Roof Comparison

gaf and Certainteed shingles installationIf you’re in the market for a new shingle roof, CertainTeed and GAF will standout as two of the best shingle manufacturer options. Most contractors installing shingle roofs use either GAF or Certainteed. The important key factors for this comparison include cost, quality, styles, warranties and the color options offered by CertainTeed vs GAF. Below we address the investment return and go in depth on whether GAF or CertainTeed is best option for you.

In general, both have their pluses and minuses but most homeowners make their final decision based on what their roofer recommends and which manufacturer offers their favorite color or design. Just remember what looks good now, may not look good in 10 years if the shingle does not hold up to the elements. Wind gusts, heavy rain, hot sun and radiating heat, extreme humidity or dry conditions all destroy roofing materials over time. Algae, mold, tree debris and sap can stain your roof over time. How will CertainTeed and GAF hold up?

CertainTeed vs GAFCertainteed is preferred by roofing contractors and has dominated commercial roofing supply chain. Why do roofers like CertainTeed so much? Mainly because of the material quality and the systems that make installation easier and more predictable for roofers:

  1. Drip Edge
  2. Gutter Guards
  3. Weather Sheilding
  4. Flashing
  5. Starter Strips
  6. Gutters and Downspouts
  7. French Drains

CertainTeed is the Top Manufacturer of Roofing is the USA

CertainTeed is the top manufacturer of roofing materials in the US. With a majority of their products on the upside of pricing, they have started producing more affordable options such as the Landmark series. Which will compete against other reasonably priced asphalt brands. A decade ago CertainTeed was not worried about their cost as it continued to dominate as the best roofing shingles, though competition is not far behind.

GAF is the second largest Shingle Manufacturer

GAF, the single largest manufacturer with residential roofing products, generally produces quality shingle lines like Camelot. The majority of GAF shingles are very cost effective products that compete with IKO, Owens-Corning, Malarkey, Tamko and other brands. 

GAF vs CertainTeed Summary

GAF: Affordable shingle lines with a some high end products CertainTeed: Higher end products with also a considerable collection of residential consumer grade affordable products as well.

Shingle Weight, Longevity and Reliability to Rain and Wind

Many homeowners look for the best style initially. But homeowners also care about longevity and reliability. All roofs will look good when first installed. Ultimately what the shingles are composed of and how well they are manufactured will determine if they will continue to look great 20 years later. 

CertainTeed Shingles are Heavy and resist Heavy Wind

CertainTeed Shingles are composed of fiberglass-reinforced asphalt with the shingles having laminated layers that are fused in construction. Most CertainTeed products weigh at least 260 lbs per square (10 ft x10 ft area). The top lines such as Arcadia Shake (450lbs), Carriage House (385lbs), and Grand Manor (425lbs) are heavier and have better warranties. 

Weight isn’t everything in shingle quality, but anyone who tells you it doesn’t matter at all is trying to sell you a bogus an inferior product. Heavier roofing tiles hold up better to high impact rain strong wind gusts. The only downside to heavier shingles materials is that an installation on steeper roof decks has zero room for error. If not properly installed the shingles will rip off in sections destroying your roof.  

GAF is a Strong Shingle Alternative to CertainTeed

GAF Shingles are also composed of fiberglass-reinforced asphalt composed in fused layers. Proper installation will guarantee 4 layers of solid protection. The Grand Canyon Shake line by GAF is among the heaviest shingle they produce weighing in at 450lbs per square but majority of the other lines like the Timberline residential shingle weighs less than 250lbs per square. This is one of the main reasons that the GAF warranties are not as extensive as CertainTeed’s.

CertainTeed and GAF’s top shingles are A fire-rated and have 110MPH wind ratings and warranties which will be boosted to 130MPH if an enhanced installation is performed that includes matching starter shingles, caps and extra nails. 

GAF and CertainTeed Cost Comparison

It is well known that the average cost of CertainTeed products on the average is more than the price of GAF products. The price gap has gotten a lot smaller compared to 15 years ago. GAF products are sold wherever you can think of buying other roofing materials while CertainTeed chooses to do their business along with wholesalers to roofing contractors. Below are some current sample prices to compare. These prices are per square (10ft x 10ft)

3-Tab Shingles:

CertainTeed’s XT25 shingle products: $65-$85

GAF Royal Sovereign shingle products: $52-$78

Architectural/  Dimensional Shingles:

CertainTeed Independence Shingles: $170-$190

GAF Timberline Ultra HD shingles: $130-$155

Common Architectural / Dimensional Shingles:

Certainteed Landmark Premium shingles: $130-$145

GAF Timberline shingles: $122-$145 

Premium or speciality shingles: 

Certainteed Highland Slate shingles: $150-$170

GAF Woodland shingles: $140-$160

GAF Has More Residential Shingle Options than CertainTeed

Each of the brands produce a large selection to choose from, so you as the homeowner will have no trouble at all finding that perfect style roof that will best suit your home and desires. As GAF remains the largest manufacturer of residential shingles, their selection is much greater.

GAF Timberline Architectural Shingle is America’s top Selling:

  • American Harvest
  • Ultra HD with a wood-shake look
  • Cool Series
  • Standard HD/Natural Shadow
  • HD reflector series
  • Armor Shield II

GAF lifetime designer shingles:

GAF Value Designer Shingles ( more affordable dimensional shingle )

  • Sienna Old fashion style shingles
  • Camelot ll
  • Stateline Slate
  • Grand Sequoia
  • ArmorSheild Impact resistant shingles
  • Grand Sequoia Key cut shingles
  • Woodland Shingles

CertainTeed Shingle Styles:

  • Belmont ( 6 colors )
  • Belmont IR Impact Resistant ( 4 colors ): Slate-like Class 4 impact resistance.
  • Carriage House ( 8 colors ): Triple-sided, Designed with slate-like edges with contrasting layers
  • Independence ( 9 colors ): Premium architectural shingle
  • Arcadia ( 6 colors ): Four layered wood-shaked look shingle
  • XT 30 IR ( 10 colors ), XT 25 ( 12 colors ), XT 25 Metric ( 9 colors ) and CT 20 ( 9 colors ): Different 3-tab shingles with a variety of warranty coverage.
  • Presidential Shake ( 10 colors ), TL ( 8 colors ), IR ( 4 colors ), Solaris ( 2 colors ), TL Solaris ( 2 colors ) and Solaris Gold ( 1 color ): Many options are available for these wood shake-look shingles.
  • Landmark Standard ( 12 colors ), Premium ( 11 colors ), Pro ( 12 colors ), Pro Solaris ( 4 colors ), IR ( 9 colors ), Solaris Platinum ( 3 colors ) and Solaris Gold ( 2 colors ): Shake like shingle design.
  • Northgate ( 10 colors ): High end shake style shingle with high class impact resistance and flexibility for all weather inclements.
  • Patriot ( 6 colors ): A strip shingle with a distinct and architectural style.
  • Highland Slate ( 8 colors ): Wide cut slate shingles.

GAF vs. Certainteed Warranty Options

CertainTeed and GAF both have a wide range of warranties covering a variety of products. Most Shingle warranties are infamous for letting the manufacturer off the hook for issues such as poorly ventilated roof deck, faulty installation or shingles that may have been installed in colder weather and don’t seal properly through loopholes.  CertainTeed’s warranties compared to GAF’s are a lot less rigorous which gives the manufacturer more reasons to deny you any warranty benefits. Due to claims being often rejected by the manufacturer, you must hire an expert roofing contractor to ensure that you never have to go down that road.

Here at premier roofing solutions we have the necessary experience and knowledge to install all brands of roofing material whether it be CertainTeed or GAF. Hiring the wrong contractor will in turn cost you thousands of dollars and loads of headaches and frustration. 

GAF Warranty Options

  1. GAFs warranty is not prorated for the initial 10 years. The coverage drops annually until year 40 when 20% of the warranty remains.
  2. Defection of any materials are covered for 3 years on a 25 year 3 shingles and 5 years on a 30 year shingle.
  3. To acquire full benefits of the GAF limited lifetime warranty, you will have to install two other GAF accessories that qualify such as GAF Deck Armor roof underlayment, GAF cobra ventilation, GAF ridge cap shingles and GAF starter strip shingles.  
  4. The GAF StainGuard warranty will cover your shingle roof against staining for 10 years in temperate weather areas and 5 years in tropical areas. GAF stain guard technology.

When GAF is a Better Choice

GAF provides many products that are worth considering for your home, though its 20-25 year shingles should only be a short-term solution. Select GAF when:

  1. You want an affordable roof that offers good durability and quality
  2. If you’re looking to install a good quality roof rather than a high end premium shingle, the middle tier of GAF products have the best track record.
  3. if you’re planning on moving within the next 10 or so years, you do not want to pay more for a high quality roof. You will be basically buying the next person who buys your house a brand new roof.

When CertainTeed is a Better Choice

The bottom line with CertainTeed is that the cost of the products are much higher compared to GAF’s, but that extra money you spend will give you a more durable and higher quality roofing system. Additionally, it is no secret that CertainTeed offers superior products and high-end shingles that are far greater than anything GAF currently produces. Select CertainTeed when:

  1. You want a premium high-end shingle with durability and longevity can not be matched.
  2. You do not plan on moving.
  3. You are looking for a warranty with a significant amount less loopholes.