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5 Reasons To Upgrade Your Shingles

Updated: Dec 13, 2022

If you own property where there are tornados and/or hail, you may be a perfect candidate for an upgrade to class 4 impact resistant shingles. Or, if you live where there are high winds and frequent storms you'll also want to consider upgrading. Regardless of your location— its likely you're here because you want to learn more about upgrading to impact resistant shingles, so lets dig-deeper and take a look at some of the best reasons to consider an upgrade.


Roofing shingles that have been engineered to withstand higher than average weather events such as large hail and flying storm debris are called Impact-Resistant or (IR) shingles. Though they come in different ratings from level 1 through 4, with 4 being the highest rating, here we'll mostly be referring to class 4 shingles that are recognized by insurance companies as being impact resistant roofing materials that can qualify for insurance rate discounts.

In order to be certified as a class 4 impact-resistant shingle, products must pass the impact resistance drop test standard UL2218 developed by Underwrites Laboratories (UL) to determine the durability of a shingles design.

How do IR shingles earn their class 4 rating?

To receive a UL Class 4 impact resistance rating, shingles must endure drop testing by a 2” diameter steel ball from a height of 20 feet. This test method is formally know as the UL 2218 Class 4 Impact-Resistance Test. After testing, the shingle must not crack or show any other type of damage to its structural integrity.

Lower class ratings are achieved by testing for the same outcomes with smaller steel balls from shorter distances. For example a class 2 rated shingle is tested using a smaller 1.5" ball from a shorter distance of 15 feet. It should be noted that only class 4 shingles are considered by insurance companies for potential premium reductions.

UL 2218 Class 4 Impact-Resistance Test steel ball drop test
UL 2218 Class 4 Impact-Resistance Test

Do they cost more?

It's true class 4 shingles will cost more than a traditional shingles. But don't forget to consider all the other potential savings and the value of knowing your most important investment is well protected.

Are they worth the investment?

If you live where hail occurs or in storm-prone climates, its likely impact-resistant shingles will pay for themselves by protecting your property from not only roof damage, but interior damage caused by unseen leaking cracked shingles. So yes, Class 4 IR shingles can be well-worth the investment for the following reasons.



Probably one of the best reasons to upgrade to impact resistant shingles is the potential yearly insurance savings. Most insurance agents will tell you that selecting a shingle that meets or exceeds the UL 2218 Class 4 Impact Test can lower your premiums.



Impact-resistant shingles like the GAF ArmorShield® series meet a Class F wind rating from (UL), which is the highest rating possible for asphalt shingles. ArmorShield® for example, uses the GAF's Dura Grip™ adhesive to seal each shingle tightly, reducing the risk of shingle blow-off and offering you greater piece of mind during the windiest of days. These asphalt shingles are warranted to withstand maximum wind gusts of up to 130 mph!



Its always nice knowing you've made the best decision. A lifetime warranty that can transfer to new homeowners can be one of the best decisions you ever make. There are differing levels of warranties and not all warranties are created equal. Achieving a true lifetime warranty requires installation by a factory certified installer.

Did you know?

Only certified installers can ensure that all manufacturers guidelines are followed to achieve this level of protection. A roof is more than just shingles, its a system designed to protect your property.

When you work with a certified installer and master elite contractor like Murray Roofing in Lincoln, NE, you are eligible to receive additional warranties not otherwise available.



Impact resistant shingles come in a variety of colors and design styles, allowing you to achieve the desired look and feel for your home. As an example, GAF’s Timberline® ArmorShield™ II Impact-Resistant Shingles have a design that is truly unique. The patented High Definition® shadow bands are applied using a sophisticated, computer-controlled technique. They are combined with a randomly blended top layer, creating an impact resistant asphalt shingle with unique variations of depth and dimension.

To learn more about selecting the perfect shingles for your new roof check out this handy guide on how to choose your roofing shingles. Here you can find the right materials for your roof and search for certified roofing contractors in your area.



This one's a no-brainer! Not all roofing companies offer free upgrades to class 4 shingles and when you find one that does you should consider the offer while you are having your roof replaced. For the few roofing companies that do offer (IR) upgrades, they are usually seasonal offers or only offered during special promotion periods.


The protection benefits alone seem to assure us that an upgrade to impact resistant shingles is well-worth the investment. Unless you live where the weather is nice all the time its probably a good idea to have a conversation about impact resistant shingles. And, when you find a roofing company that is offering free upgrades to IR shingles jump on the chance!

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