GAF is one of the largest, top-selling roofing companies for residential and commercial buildings in North America. Their Royal Sovereign 3-tab shingles and wood-shake look Timberline architectural shingles remain some of the most popular and highest rated roofing shingle brands available due to their wind and impact resistance. Unfortunately, no manufacturer is a stranger to complaints. Let’s take a look at what the customers have to say.
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Image source: Spahn and Rose
One of the biggest advantages to installing GAF shingles is their durability. Many homeowners have praised GAF shingles' ability to withstand severe weather conditions and storms:
"For most of the first 20 years we owned this house, we had to pay someone to replace multiple shingles every spring. Since having GAF shingles installed, we haven't had to call anyone to replace a shingle. Not one shingle has blown off and we live in the midwest where there are some violent windstorms."
Many shingle manufacturers will include wind warranties with speeds up to 110 or 130 MPH, but some GAF shingles like the Timberline HDZ have unlimited wind speeds. One customer in the Midwest was pleasantly surprised that their shingles held up in the heart of Tornado Alley:
“With the strong winds and large hailstones we get, these have held up great! Their color has even remained beautiful. People are shocked when they hear that they are 10 years old.”
In addition to wind resistance, GAF’s roof shingles also include a fiberglass foundation called the Micro Weave Core which prevents cracking in colder weather as well as a StainGuard to protect against algae damage.
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Thanks to its strong durability and ability to withstand severe weather conditions, some customers have claimed their GAF shingles lasted for years without much maintenance:
“The roofing shingles have been installed for about seven years now. I really like the quality of the material, especially when I compared them to the shingles I purchased for installation on my shed.”
“I had these shingles installed over four years ago and have had no problems. I haven't had any type of leaking or have any shingles fall off. Overall the condition of the shingles are still in great shape and I estimate them to last for at least another 15 years.”
Image source: GAF
Customers and roofing contractors alike have praised how simple and easy it is to install GAF products due to their training program, wider nailing areas, and complete roofing system. One homeowner was pleased with the efficiency and outcome of their installation:
“The shingles went on very quickly and very well. Four or five nails per shingle were used. We have received many compliments on how they look. I would certainly recommend them to others.”
When you install the Complete Roofing System, you can choose between a variety of roofing materials like the Energy Star certified GAF Timberline HD shingles, along with starter strips, ArmorShield ridge cap shingles, a leak barrier, and roof deck paper/underlayment. Installing a roofing system with any of the GAF Timberline shingles comes with a lifetime warranty and non-prorated coverage for the first 10 years.
GAF's rigorous training program allows roofers to not only become experienced with GAF's roofing products, but they become licensed and insured, known as GAF Master Elite Roofing Contractors. One California homeowner appreciated the quick but thorough installation:
“We replaced the entire roof in 2007. Had it for almost five years now. The roof still looks new. Knock on the wood, the roof has never leaked (thanks to good quality of work by the installer). We didn't have to replace or repair and don't expect to in the next decade or so.”
Choosing a certified and licensed GAF installer will help provide you with peace of mind and can also make you eligible for stronger warranty coverage.
GAF offers competitive warranties in the roofing industry, often compared to other major manufacturers like CertainTeed and Owens Corning. GAF's Timberline shingles (except the Timberline Ultra line) come with a choice of different warranties including the Golden Pledge Warranty, Silver Pledge Limited Warranty, System Plus Limited Warranty, GAF Roofing System Limited Warranty, and the GAF Shingle and Accessory Limited Warranty.
While all of these warranties come with lifetime warranties for the shingles, the Golden Pledge Warranty features unlimited wind speeds, covers tear-off, workmanship, and disposal. One customer was pleased with their shingles and warranty:
“I love my Timberline shingles. They have a great warranty on them. Those new shingles stood up to the very severe high winds that came along during hurricane Matthew and never budged. None of them flew off and none of them broke or anything to my surprise.”
Image source: Proven Contracting
Though granule loss over time or after big storms is common with asphalt roofing shingles, some homeowners have complained about granule loss well before the 30-year warranty term limit:
“At 20 years they were shedding their granules rather heavily and some exposed asphalt edges were beginning to break off.”
One contractor also shared his experience with granule loss:
“It's quite obvious you haven't had the shingles long enough for all the granules to end up in the gutters. I have been a roofing contractor for over 26 years. Twelve years ago I had two customers request the GAF 30 line. I gave it a shot. Now my customers are fighting GAF over warranty issues.”
Another common complaint among homeowners is the quality of customer service, as several customers said their warranty claims were denied:
“I have faulty ridge cap shingles straight out of the box that I proved were manufactured incorrectly and they denied my claim. The warranty department is not interested in customer service, but rather how to deny your claim and give you the runaround.”
Other homeowners were upset that GAF also didn’t seem to take responsibility for poor workmanship installations:
“The way warranty claims department works: customer: ‘Roof leaks after contractor's work is completed,’ claims department: ‘We contacted the contractor, he said it isn't his fault, so we don't cover it.’ Pathetic.”
GAF shingles in summary
Image source: GAF
Like all other major roofing manufacturers, GAF is no stranger to criticism. Some shingle defects are entirely common, but if you choose to install one of GAF’s Timberline shingle brands or its Complete Roofing System, you’ll have a lifetime GAF warranty whether you have an old roof or a new roof. While some homeowners are upset with GAF’s customer service, they still remain one of the top companies in the industry and offer the best-selling asphalt shingles available.