After a significant hail storm, it is very important to inspect your roof for hail damage. Your roof is designed to last between twenty and fifty years depending on the thickness and quality of the material. Some asphalt shingles are considered impact resistant. These shingles are tested in the factory to insure that they will stand up to much more punishment than a non-impact resistant type shingle. It is important to note that no shingle is hail proof.
There is not a single manufacturer that will guarantee there product will resist all types of hail. This is because of the nature of hail. A two inch hail ball can be significantly more damaging than a one inch ball. However, most manufactures have a product line that is deemed hail resistant. To be resistant to hail the product line must be rigorously tested. The Owens Corning line of impact resistant shingles are affordable and of the highest quality on the market. Your insurance company should acknowledge the product line meets the highest standards for impact resistance – UL 2218, Class 4. A Class 4 product will usually earn you a discount with your insurance premiums. A partial list of Class 4 shingles can be found here.
After a significant storm, your insurance company will assess the damage to your roof. If your insurance company decides that you are eligible for a full roof replacement, they will be liable to replace the shingles that you had on your roof at the date of loss. Any upgrades that you decide to make to make to your house will not be covered by your insurance company. If the difference in price between the existing shingles and a better impact resistant shingle is offset by the difference of your new discounted premiums. It might be a wise decision to make the upgrade and recover your initial investment over the next couple of years. Just remember that there is no such thing as a hail proof shingle. There are only shingles that are statistically less likely to be damaged by the next storm. It would be wise to confirm the discount that your particular insurance company will offer you, if you decide to use a Class 4 shingle.
By Nick Dorotik