2023 GAF vs Owens Corning – Which Is Best?

Typical Price Range To Install a new Roof
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GAF and Owens Corning are two top brands you’ll encounter as you search for roof replacement shingles.

Both companies are reputable and offer excellent shingles, but each brands has its own features, as well as pros and cons.

Lets take a close look at the differences between Owens Corning and GAF shingles to decide which one is best for your home and budget.

Cost of GAF vs Owens Corning Shingles

Naturally asphalt shingle cost is the first thing most homeowners consider when comparing various asphalt shingles manufacturers.

Here is a tables summarizing the costs and basic features of OC and GAF shingles

Shingle Name Cost Function Type
GAF Marquis WeatherMax $84 Budget shingles 3-Tab shingles
GAF Royal Sovereign $118 Budget shingles with better appearance 3-tab shingles
GAF Timberline HDZ $100 Shingles with bold colors and contrasts Mid-range shingles
GAF Timberline NS $92 Made to resemble wood shake Mid-range shingles
GAF Timberline UHD $135 Thicker and more realistic wood shake appearance Mid-range shingles
GAF Timberline UHD with Dual Shadow Line $140 Same as above but with enhanced shadow line Mid-range shingles
GAF Timberline AS II $245 Class 4 impact resistance with feathered shadow bands Mid-range shingles
GAF Timberline CS $210 Reflective shingles to reduce house temperature Mid-range shingles
GAF Timberline HDZ RS $105 Vivid colors, enhanced shadows, complies with Title 24 cool roof requirements Mid-range shingles
GAF Timberline HDZ RS+ $110 Same as above but with EcoDark granules and meets LA County standards Mid-range shingles
GAF Grand Canyon $240 Rugged wood shake style Designer shingles
GAF Camelot II $200 Artisan-crafted shapes Designer shingles
GAF Slateline $175 Mimics slate’s shadow lines and cut-outs Designer shingles
GAF Grand Sequoia $190 Artisan-crafted and with oversized tabs, perfect for natural settings Designer shingles
GAF Woodland $185 Made in hand-cut Old World style Designer shingles
GAF Grand Sequoia AS $232 Enhanced impact resistance and beauty Designer shingles
GAF Grand Sequoia RS $330 Wood shake look, extra-large with oversized tabs Designer shingles
Owens Corning Supreme $75 Standard 3-tab shingles Budget 3-tab shingles
Owens Corning Oakridge $85 Entry-level shingles for harsher environments Entry-level shingles
Owens Corning Duration $90 Similar to Oakridge but with better performance and more styles Flagship entry-level shingles
Owens Corning Duration Designer $90 Unique styles for contrast Flagship entry-level shingles
Owens Corning Duration COOL $90 Reflects light for cooling Flagship entry-level shingles
Owens Corning Duration COOL Plus $90 Meets LA County cooling standards Flagship entry-level shingles
Owens Corning Duration FLEX $90 Meets Class 4 impact rating Flagship entry-level shingles
Owens Corning Duration MAX $90 Thicker Duration shingles Flagship entry-level shingles
Owens Corning Duration STORM $90 Reinforced with polymeric backing Flagship entry-level shingles
Owens Corning WeatherGuard HP $110 Same as Duration STORM but without SureNail Mid-level shingles
Owens Corning Woodcrest $200 Mimics wood-shake appearance Luxury shingles
Owens Corning Woodmoor $200 Same as above but thicker Luxury shingles
Owens Corning Berkshire $210 Mimics stone slate Luxury shingles

GAF Shingles Features

GAF’s shingles come in three types, each having a different price range:

-3-Tab Shingles (cheapest)
-Timberline Architectural Roofing Shingles (mid-range pricing)
-Designer Shingles (premium cost)

The 3-Tab shingles are best suited for those on a budget, while homeowners with some extra cash can consider the Timberline Roofing Shingles.

Timberline Shingles are considered to be the most popular shingles in the US and they grace the largest number of American homes, since they offer a good balance of reasonable cost, curb appeal and durability.

If you truly want a luxury roof, GAF’s Designer Shingles are your best bet.

While each shingle within the three lines is different, there are some common features that all GAF shingles offers:

StainGuard Technology

Roofs can promote algae growth if they’re not designed to stunt the spread of these organisms. Cleaning your roof is troublesome and time-consuming.

That’s why GAF developed its StainGuard Plus Technology. It uses a time-release mechanism to prevent blue-green algae from growing.

These bacteria don’t damage your roof, but they can form stains. With StainGuard Plus, you can enjoy 25 years of GAF’s blue-green algae limited warranty. Your roof will look clean compared to an unprotected one.

Environmentally Friendly

GAF uses extensive weight optimization during every step to reduce waste during the manufacturing process.

As a result, each shingle uses less asphalt and limestone compared to a typical competitor’s products. Being lighter also means they’re easier to transport and thus reduces fuel costs.

All of the company’s shingles are 100% recyclable too. If you’re passionate about saving nature, you can consider getting GAF shingles.

Advanced Protection Shingle Technology

Each shingle product from GAF has this unique technology, which is meant to reinforce every shingle from damage. The company only sends out its products after 4,375 quality checks to ensure optimum quality.

The highest possible qualifications for wind resistance in the roofing industry are the ASTM D3161 Class F and ASTM D7158 Class H tests.

The former involves winds up to 110 mph, and the latter will see these shingles withstanding 150 mph winds. All of GAF’s products have passed both tests, indicating durability.

It doesn’t end here. With Advanced Protection Shingle Technology, these shingles can withstand rain and extreme temperatures. Thanks to the superb toughness, flexibility, and granule adhesion, GAF’s reputation remains excellent.

Owens Corning Shingles Features

Owens Corning manufactures an extensive range of shingles, and the company believes in specialization. They have seven shingle lines, each with a specific purpose.

-WeatherGuard HP

We ordered them according to the average cost in descending order, and you’ll find multiple sub-lines among many of them. There are also many colors to choose from; Owens Corning has an impressive palette to satisfy everyone.

Here are some common Owens Corning shingles features:

SureNail Technology

All reputable contractors know that shingles can be difficult to install, as nails don’t always keep the shingle in place, or over-penetration may happen. To address these problems, Owens Corning developed SureNail Technology.

Owens Corning’s shingles are 250% harder to dislodge due to wind and 900% less likely to be overdriven.

Overdriven nails make extra nails and holes necessary, but SureNail can reduce their occurrence. That way, your roofer will have an easier job installing these shingles.

Did you know? Owens Corning is obsessed with experimentation and innovation. The company has technology aside from SureNail that set their shingles apart from others.

SureNail technology involves three layers of reinforcement in the nailing area. It also increases delamination resistance, a problem with shingles during extreme temperatures.

Owens Corning’s shingles are twice less likely to have their layers separate in these circumstances.

Moisture Protection

Moisture damage is a significant concern for your roof, and Owens Corning shingles all have a fiberglass mat at their core.

Weathering-grade asphalt and mineral granules are layered around the core for a watertight roof. The company has a heat-activated sealant that it recommends due to its effective water resistance.

Unlike GAF shingles, there aren’t as many shared features between Owens Corning’s counterparts. This isn’t a sign of inferiority, as Owens Corning simply has a different philosophy when it comes to shingles. Some products may not have certain features listed here as well.

GAF Shingles Pros and Cons

Here are the advantages and disadvantages to expect when you go with GAF shingles.

Pros of GAF Shingles

Many Colors to Choose From

GAF prides itself on having many shingle colors to choose from. GAF shingles offer a wide range of hues you can pick to complement your home and location. There’s always something to fall in love with.

Check out our comprehensive guide on Top Roof and House Color Combinations.

Something for Everyone

Homeowners come from all walks of life, and it’s natural to see people shopping for shingles on different budgets. GAF has shingles catering toward those on a budget, as well as as those who want a premium shingle roof and can afford to pay more.

Even within different price ranges, you can find different specialized products. Some shingles are rated to perform against hail damage, while others are more energy efficient. Such an extensive catalog of products is worth the praise from homeowners.

Possibility of Upgraded Warranties

GAF may certify a roofer as a Master Elite Contractor if they pass the company’s tests. If you hire one for your roofing job, they can offer you better warranties.

The coverage period is usually extended, and you can even get the Golden Pledge Warranty, the company’s best option. Among its various benefits, a Master Elite Contractor is obliged to fix errors immediately upon discovery and notification.

Most of the company’s warranties are also transferrable one time.

Pro Tip: Only 2% of U.S. roofers are certified by GAF as Master Elite Contractors. If you locate one near you, it’s a significant advantage, and we highly recommend the Golden Pledge Warranty.

Cons of GAF Shingles

Lack of Master Elite Roofers

While the Golden Pledge Warranty is attractive, finding a Master Elite-certified roofer is not easy. You’re likely going to have to make do with GAF’s other warranties or add a roofer’s warranty to the mix.

Granule Loss

There are reports that GAF shingles suffer more granule loss than some brands. While this is a universal problem, the company’s stigma attached to it can be off-putting.

Warranty Issues

GAF, like all roofing manufacturers, tries to make it difficult for customers to claim their warranties.

It can take weeks of calling and sending emails before they’re convinced to let you claim it. In the meantime, GAF also won’t compensate you for any temporary fixes you go with before you manage to prove there’s a problem.

Owens Corning Shingles Pros and Cons

Before going forward with Owens Corning shingles, here are the pros and cons to consider.

OC Shingles Pros

Many Options

As you have seven lines and even more sub-lines to choose from, Owens Corning shingles are popular in the roofing industry.

There’s almost always a choice that suits your needs and budget. Each Corning shingle line has 4 to 14 colors, but your region will determine which are available.

The seven lines have a targeted range of clients, including those who want increased impact resistance or protection against extreme winds.

Total Protection Roofing System

Aside from shingles, Owens Corning also offers the other roofing components required for a comprehensive installation. You can get barriers, underlayment, and more through this system.

Having everything on your roof coming from one place will also help you with extra warranties you won’t get otherwise.

An example is the company’s Rolled Ridge Vent, which has a 20-year warranty on its own. You can have it extended to a lifetime warranty. The condition is to get another product and add shingles with a limited lifetime warranty.

Easy Installation

Thanks to Owens Corning’s SureNail technology, installing its shingles tends to be easier for your hired contractors. With fewer holes needed, you can even try installing them yourself if you have the experience.

Cons of OC Shingles

Warranty Problems

Similar to GAF, Owens Corning also has an issue with warranty claims, even if the company’s customer service department is often hailed as excellent.

It can take so much effort to get Owens Corning to honor your warranty that some homeowners decide it’s not worth it.

The leading cause of roof failure is substandard installation, and sadly, the manufacturers aren’t keen on covering that.

Avoiding that is possible if you hire a contractor with an overwhelmingly
positive record. They should also have above-average customer service ratings so you can ensure everything is done right.

Shingle Color Problems

Despite Owens Corning’s Bourbon color winning an award, a sign of the company’s expertise, some customers are complaining about the colors.

The company’s TruDefinition Duration shingles, which are considered designer shingles, have received complaints that they’re different from the brochures. This is a legitimate problem, though it may also be overblown.

Pro Tip: Before getting the shingles you want, you must look up actual pictures from homeowners who have bought them.

Brochures and online images may have been enhanced by software to appear more attractive. Lighting and angles will also affect how the shingles look in photos.

Poor Sealing in Cold Weather

The poor sealing issue can occur if your contractor installs Owens Corning shingles during cold or cloudy days.

This is because the company recommends installing under direct sunlight over several days. Thermal sealing will only work with adequate heat, and without sunny days, it may never seal properly.

To avoid this, ensure your roofer installs everything during a warmer day or applies heat directly to the sealant.

Corning vs GAF Warranties

Both companies offer a number of warranties:

GAF Warranties

Shingle & Accessory Limited Warranty
Roofing System Limited Warranty
System Plus Limited Warranty
Silver Pledge Limited Warranty
Golden Pledge Limited Warranty

Owens Corning Warranties

Standard Product Limited Warranty
System Protection Limited Warranty
Preferred Protection Limited Warranty
Platinum Protection Limited Warranty

Did you know? Both companies will only offer their best warranties if a certified contractor handles the installation.

Is GAF Better Than Owens Corning?

Both GAF and Owens Corning are industry leading asphalt shingles brands with excellent product selection, durability and warranty.

Typical Price Range To Install A New Roof Average: $4,190 - $6,740
See costs in your area

Author: Leo B
For over 20 years Leo has run a successful roofing business in New England, specializing in metal roofing, as well as cool flat roofing technologies. Having replaced and installed hundreds of roofs in New England, Leo has first hand experience with pretty much every residential roofing material and roofing manufacturer available in the US.
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One comment on “2023 GAF vs Owens Corning – Which Is Best?

  1. In this article you mention Owens corning has twice as much less chance of delamination. Is that versus GAF?
    Also, you’re not supposed to find the difference between the two top warranties. If I is a consumer, I’m looking to get to Goldyn Pledge Warranty done properly on my roof versus the platinum protection warranty which one is better? I know that GAF covers miss installation for 25 or even up to 30 years with decorative shingles but what about the platinum protection?