Roof repairs can be expensive – especially if the damage was caused by hail or damaging storms. But recent developments in roofing material can now help prevent this type of damage from occurring in the first place. Known as “impact resistant,” a new type of single can make your home’s roof nearly impervious to most hail- and wind-related damage. The question is: are they worth the cost? We’ll find out in this impact resistant shingles review.

What are Impact Resistant Shingles?

Shingles that are “impact resistant” are considered a class 4 product, and are designed to withstand high winds and hail damage. These shingles may be made of copper, aluminum, resin and plastic.

Shingles with the Class 4 rating have an impact resistance rating of UL 2218. The UL 2218 is the roofing industry standard for testing shingles against hail impact. There are four testing classes that use four different steel ball sizes that range from 1 1/4” to 2”. These steel balls are dropped at heights between 12 and 20 feet to mimic the impact of hail falling at high speeds.

The UL 2218 is currently the highest impact resistance rating. Aside from hail impact, these shingles can also withstand high winds up to 110mph.

Are Class 4 Impact Resistant Shingles Worth the Cost?

Generally, yes. But it really depends on where you live. Thousands of homeowners lose their roofs to wind and hail damage each year, but some areas are more affected by damaging storms than others. Homes in areas that experience stronger, damaging storms will benefit greatly from impact resistant shingles because they offer long-term roof protection.

Impact resistant shingles do cost more initially, but they pay for themselves in the long run. Typically, these shingles cost 10-20% more than their non-impact counterparts. That being said, they reduce a homeowner’s maintenance costs and may even prevent premature roof replacement.

Many insurers also offer discounts to homeowners with a Class 4 roof. This discount can also help offset the higher costs of these shingles.