(410) 677-4975
Big House with GAF Patriot Red Shingles House in Pocomoke MD with new GAF Timberline HDZ Patriot Red Shingles Roof Replacement Pocomoke City MD roofing Contractor G and Bros Roofing LLC

Class 3 vs Class 4 Shingles: Choosing the Best Impact Resistance for Your Roof

By : Guillermo Molina Matus

Weighing the merits of Class 3 vs Class 4 shingles boils down to one key factor: impact resistance, and its implications for your roof’s durability and your wallet. This article aims to demystify the differences, providing you with a direct comparison that considers whether Class 4’s superior resistance to hail and extreme weather justifies the higher cost. From storm protection to potential insurance benefits, we guide you to the right choice tailored to the needs of your home.

Key Takeaways

  • Class 4 shingles offer heightened impact resistance compared to Class 3, better withstanding the force of hail and severe weather conditions such as high winds and heavy rain.
  • Upfront costs for Class 4 shingles are higher, but they may result in insurance discounts, fewer repairs, increased home resale value, and overall long-term savings.
  • Proper installation is critical for maximizing the benefits of high-impact resistant shingles, with companies such as G and Bros Roofing providing expertise and quality customer service.

Understanding Class 3 and Class 4 Shingle Ratings

Kasi - Residential Shingles and Metal Roof Installation Salisbury MD G and Bros Roofing LLC Roofing Contractor

In the domain of roofing materials, there’s a clear distinction in durability—especially regarding their ability to endure the pounding from hailstones. Impact resistant roof shingles are paramount for homeowners seeking robust protection, with Class 3 and Class 4 shingles emerging as leaders in impact resistance. To augment your home’s defense significantly, opting to install impact resistant shingles is a wise choice.

Class 3 Shingles offer:

  • Reliable wind resistance
  • Moderate level of impact resistance
  • The capability to withstand steel balls that measure up to 1.75 inches in diameter
  • Aptness for homes situated within areas where weather conditions tend not be extreme.

Ascend to the peak resilience offered by Class 4 shingles—the gold standard in roofing fortitude against meteorological onslaughts. These superior grade defenders claim victory over impacts inflicted by steel balls as large as two inches across. In the face of tempestuous skies replete with torrents unleashed upon them, it’s these very class four or “Class IV” (for insurance rating purposes) protected roofs that deliver unmatched safeguarding during such trials involving:

  • violent hail storms
  • gale-force winds
  • torrential downpours
  • fluctuating extremities of temperature

The Impact Resistance Test: How Shingles Earn Their Class

In the pursuit of excellence, shingles must prove themselves against the strenuous UL 2218 classification system. Their endurance is challenged across categories from Class 1 to Class 4, each ascending in demands for impact resistance. Atop this hierarchy sits Class 4—a designation that confirms a shingle’s robust capacity to withstand such an impact.

The centerpiece of testing is quite dramatic: Imagine a two-inch steel ball descending like lightning from a height matching that of a two-story building, channeling the forceful blow akin to real hailstones upon its target below—the waiting shingle. To secure the coveted Class 4 distinction means showing absolute resilience by exhibiting no evidence of damage including tears, cracks, splits or holes when inspected from underneath—an uncompromising benchmark indicating they can hold their ground amidst nature’s barrage.

This level of scrutiny ensures that every recognized class-graded piece epitomizes an unyielding stance against formidable impacts—a testament not only seen but felt as these materials stand sentinel atop countless homes under open skies.

Class 3 Shingles: Adequate Protection or a Compromise?

Roof shingles rated as Class 3 represent a moderate choice in the diverse array of roofing options. These shingles are particularly suitable for areas with relatively mild weather patterns, providing robust defense against impacts from steel balls that have a diameter of 1.75 inches and winds that can gust up to 60 mph. They offer homeowners an appealing compromise, delivering solid performance during common atmospheric conditions without excessively straining their budgets.

One must consider whether opting for merely ‘sufficient’ protection is risky when facing unpredictable climate shifts. Despite being thicker and manufactured from more durable materials than lower-rated alternatives, Class 3 roof shingles might not deliver the impermeable barrier needed during extreme weather events orchestrated by nature’s forces. This presents a debate over financial prudence versus security: choosing between reinforcing one’s home ahead of potential severe storms or conserving funds possibly intended for unforeseen expenses.

Class 4 Shingles: The Ultimate Shield Against Hail Damage

F-Wave Synthetic shingles Salisbury MD G and bros Roofing

As the sky launches hailstones similar to otherworldly projectiles, class 4 shingles remain defiant. These asphalt shingles serve as a robust, hail proof roof, crafted to withstand nature’s most relentless attacks – including the vicious battering from hail that can measure up to two inches across. Celebrated for their resilience are offerings such as GAF’s Timberline AS II and Owens Corning’s TruDefinition Duration Storm shingles. They come equipped with cutting-edge technology like WeatherGuard® and SBS-modified asphalt that solidifies them as an impenetrable defense against severe weather.

These top-tier class 4 shingles offer more than just impact resistance—they’re designed to hold their own against extreme weather assaults like Class 4 hurricane-force winds. It’s not only about providing rock-solid protection. Investing in these durable roofing solutions could lead homeowners towards valuable insurance discounts—a strategic benefit for forward-thinking individuals anticipating future climates’ unpredictability.

Cost Comparison: Is Upgrading to Class 4 Worth It?

Class 4 shingles come at a premium, potentially costing up to 20% more than conventional asphalt shingles. The value of this investment becomes increasingly apparent over time. These resilient Class 4 shingles deliver long-term financial benefits by reducing the need for frequent maintenance and repairs.

Taking into account the full spectrum of costs associated with roofing materials, paying extra for Class 4 shingles can initially feel like a heavy hit to one’s finances. Homeowners are often enticed by future advantages such as possible insurance discounts, an uplift in property resale value, and sidestepping early roof replacements. For those who plan ahead with their investments in mind rather than immediate expenses, they will find that Class 4 roofing not only offers robust protection but also yields considerable savings and reassurance down the line.

Insurance Perks: Discounts for Using Class 4 Shingles

Steve - Residential Shingles Roof Installation Berlin MD G and Bros Roofing LLC Roofing Contractor

Opting for Class 4 shingles to fortify your home can prove wise, especially in terms of potentially lowering insurance premiums. Insurance companies usually acknowledge the high level of protection these shingles offer against elements like hail and storms by offering notable discounts to those who invest in them. Although your insurance provider may not help with the initial investment, you could see a reduction in future premium costs as a benefit for this proactive measure.

The array of advantages offered by Class 4 shingles includes:

  • Reductions on homeowner’s insurance
  • Enhanced impact resistance that extends roof durability
  • Increased value of your property when it comes time to sell
  • Durability under harsh weather conditions typical for areas frequently hit by hail
  • A financially prudent choice over time

Real-Life Performance: Class 3 vs Class 4 Shingles in Extreme Weather

F-Wave Synthetic shingles Salisbury MD G and bros Roofing

A shingle’s true resilience is measured not during times of peace, but amidst the chaos of storms. The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) conducts rigorous testing to gauge how shingles hold up against manufactured hailstones—tests that reveal the level of cosmetic impairment and structural harm which typical evaluations might miss. This scrutiny includes identifying indicators like:

  • Dings
  • Loss of granule surface
  • Rips
  • Punctures

These elements are crucial in determining a shingle’s real-world endurance when pitted against nature’s wrath.

Class 4 rated shingles have consistently demonstrated their superiority under tumultuous conditions, providing enhanced safeguarding from harsh climates compared to Class 3 varieties. Withstanding both hail impacts and high-speed debris with greater finesse, their augmented impact resistance reflects the quality of construction and material robustness inherent in their design. Tales of courage echo this sentiment. Roofs sheathed in class 4 materials exhibit markedly improved longevity after weathering ferocious events such as the devastating hailstorm experienced in 2017, an event that rendered inferior classes extensively damaged.

Aesthetic and Design Considerations

The pursuit of a durable roof does not mean having to sacrifice its visual appeal. The variety of shingle options available in both Class 3 and Class 4 gives homeowners an abundant selection spanning multiple colors, textures, and designs that enhance curb appeal while providing robust protection. Whether it’s the natural look of cedar or the refined touch offered by slate, there is a roofing material for every taste, perfectly blending aesthetic allure with practical durability.

Shingle manufacturers are tuned into the homeowner’s preference for roofs that are visually appealing fortresses atop their homes. They offer extensive color varieties and expert recommendations on color pairings that accentuate your home’s architectural style—be it through striking red shingles or distinctive blue or green tones. CertainTeed’s luxurious shingles and Owens Corning’s hail-resistant offerings deliver homeowners both charm and strength — assuring that their rooftop serves as an impressive display as well as resilient armor against nature’s elements.

Longevity and Maintenance: Balancing Costs With Durability

Timberline HDZ - UHDZ shingles compared

The lifespan of a shingle can stretch across many years. Class 3 shingles typically serve homeowners well for about 15 to 20 years, but might struggle under the harsh demands of persistent wind and severe weather conditions. On the other hand, class 4 shingles stand as sentinels for an impressive duration—up to half a century—which means roof replacement becomes far less frequent.

Durable shingles such as those in class 4 come with comprehensive warranties that often extend to five decades. These long-term guarantees reflect manufacturers’ trust in the durability and performance longevity of their products. By opting for resilient class 4 roofing materials, homeowners not only boost their property’s potential resale value, but also reap substantial savings over time on maintenance costs—thereby achieving equilibrium between upfront expenditure and sustained value.

Expert Installation Matters: Why Choose G and Bros Roofing

Navigating the way to a robust roofing solution hinges on professional execution, and within Salisbury MD, G and Bros Roofing stands as a model of distinction and skill. This familial enterprise is celebrated for its standout dedication to customer interaction excellence along with its transparent dialogue approach. They pledge:

  • Skilled implementation
  • Noteworthy client care
  • Unambiguous correspondence
  • A smooth experience from initial engagement through to the application of the last shingle

Earning acclaim for their integrity as well as their scrupulous management of materials, G and Bros Roofing has risen to prominence in expertly fitting impact-resistant shingles within the roofing sector. Each undertaking they perform bears witness to their strict observance of safety protocols paired with an unwavering quest for craftsmanship superiority.

Making the Right Choice for Your Home in Salisbury MD

Inhabitants of Salisbury MD are no strangers to storm-laden skies. When it comes to choosing between Class 3 and Class 4 shingles, the decision extends beyond theory into practicality. The area’s climate, the regular occurrence of harsh weather events, and potential financial benefits all play a role in determining whether investing in the enhanced defense offered by Class 4 shingles is worth the extra cost compared to their less durable Class 3 counterparts.

Within this seaside community where calm can swiftly turn turbulent, opting for the robust protection provided by class-4-rated roofing materials might be what stands between a home withstanding fierce storms or succumbing to them. For homeowners here, it’s crucial not just to factor in initial costs, but also to future-proof their homes against severe weather onslaughts. Ensuring they have refuge that remains intact when faced with nature’s fury is paramount.


As we’ve journeyed through the intricacies of Class 3 and Class 4 shingles, it’s clear that the choice is not merely one of cost, but of value—value measured in durability, protection, and peace of mind. Class 4 shingles emerge as the paragons of roofing, offering unmatched defense against the fury of hailstorms and the relentless toll of time, all while providing potential financial benefits through insurance discounts and enhanced home value.

The roof over your head is more than just a structural necessity; it is a shield against the elements, a canvas for your home’s aesthetic, and an investment in your property’s future. When the sky darkens, and the first hailstone falls, may your choice of shingles stand as your home’s steadfast guardian.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much extra are Class 4 shingles?

The price for class 4 shingles incurs an extra charge of $50 for every 100 square feet, which amounts to about $1,000 for a roof spanning 2,000 square feet. The final cost can vary depending on the brand of class 4 shingles selected and the dimensions of your residence.

How can you tell if you have Class 4 shingles?

The impact rating of shingles cannot be discerned simply by visual inspection. This information is typically indicated on the cellophane located beneath the shingle.

It’s important to consider this detail when evaluating your shingles.

Are Class 4 shingles worth it?

Yes, Class 4 shingles are worth it due to their high impact resistance and extended longevity, which can potentially provide insurance benefits in the long run.

What makes Class 4 shingles more impact resistant than Class 3?

Thanks to the utilization of superior materials and construction methods, class 4 shingles offer enhanced resistance to impacts when compared with Class 3 shingles. This higher grade of durability allows them to endure hailstones that can reach up to 2 inches in diameter, thus making them more impact resistant as they belong to class 4.

Will upgrading to Class 4 shingles increase my home’s resale value?

Especially in areas prone to harsh weather, enhancing your home with class 4 shingles may boost its market value.

Downward view of black shingles roof installation
Share to...