What type of shingle should I put on my roof is a common question asked by homeowners once I have completed their roof repair. Unless you have a $ 350,000 plus house or neighborhood covenants require you to use dimensional / architectural shingles a simple three tab shingle is probably the best bang for your buck.
Usually they are classified by a 20, 25 or 30 year warranty. What increases the life of a shingle is the thickness of the composite which is directly related to its weight. The 25 year product looks to hold up much better than the 20 year while the 30 year is comparable in price to a dimensional shingle.
Dimensional shingles are more attractive sometimes creating an appearance of "more action" or pizzazz on the roof. Many of these styles have overlapping pieces that are glued together to portray the dimensional look which is fine as long as they are delivered according to manufacturers specifications. The problem I have observed is that sometimes, usually on a steep roof, the nails are not placed within the tolerances resulting in a "slipping apart" of these pieces over time requiring a roof repair. Gravity and heat cause these shingles to sag individually or in groups resulting in premature failure typically causing a water leak. Quality control for nailing with very little margin for error is difficult to obtain but not impossible. Many manufacturers offer a dimensional shingle that is one piece that simulates the multipiece look, which in my opinion, would be a better choice. The shingles look fine and they are less expensive than their counterparts. Good luck!