As a homeowner you want a roofing material that will not only look great but be able to weather whatever Mother Nature and your environment can throw at it. One such material that’s been proven to stand up to these factors is impact resistant shingles. Let’s look at what impact resistant materials are, how they are certified and other benefits of choosing this rugged material.

What Are Impact Resistant Shingles?

Impact resistant shingles are asphalt shingles that have been fortified with an insert, typically fiberglass, which makes them thicker, more rugged and able to withstand impacts and wind that would damage a typical asphalt shingle.

How Are They Certified?

You can’t just call any old shingle an impact resistant or Class 4 material, it has to go through a battery of tests before it can be certified by the third party product testing company Underwriter Laboratories or UL.

These tests include dropping a 2 inch steel ball from 20 feet above the material and a wind tunnel test. The shingle must not show any cracks, tears or punctures from the steel ball test and must be able to lay flat and strong with wind tests up to 130 miles per hour. If they can pass these tests and more than the material can be labeled as Class 4 or impact resistant.

What Are Some Other Benefits?

Not only do impact resistant materials perform well but they also look great. The added thickness and dimensional cut of the shingle gives an aesthetic quality found in all other dimensional or architectural shingles. Many homeowners also enjoy the shadows cast by the thicker material. You can use impact resistant materials to mimic premium materials as well, such as wood shakes or even slate.

Perhaps the greatest reason for purchasing impact resistant materials is the insurance discounts you can receive from your home insurance company with impact resistant materials. Impact resistant materials are generally more expensive than typical roofing materials but most major insurers will discount your home insurance premium up to 30% so the material will pay for itself over time. Discuss impact resistant materials with your agent to see what kind of discounts they can provide you.

As you see there are many benefits to choosing impact resistant materials. Talk to your local roofing consultant to find out if impact resistant shingles are the right match for your home.