Whether you are replacing your roof out of necessity or desire, choosing the right shingles for your roof can feel overwhelming. It’s a huge decision, and one that will have effects for years to come. Many homeowners choose to go with traditional asphalt shingles simply because they’re historically the most popular. And it’s true—they can be a great option in the right situations. However, our team at Indy Roof & Restoration has found polymer modified shingles to be an ideal replacement for a number of reasons that we’ll cover in this blog.

If you are considering paying the upgrade cost for polymer modified shingles, we’re here to help you examine your options and find out if it’s the right fit for you. From pros and cons to cost analysis and return on investment, here’s what you need to know.

What Are Polymer Modified Shingles?

Polymer modified shingles are relatively new, compared to the traditional asphalt shingles that have dominated the roofing industry. However over recent years, the demand for them has increased.

These shingles look identical to standard 3-tab asphalt shingles but the process of constructing them gives them more durability and longevity. Polymers are added to the mixture early on in the construction process and less heat is used during stabilization. This creates a unique compound interior that is simultaneously more stronger and more flexible than asphalt shingles.

Benefits of Polymer Modified Shingles

The pliability that polymer modified shingles have allows them to withstand significantly higher wind speeds and other extreme weather compared to their counterparts. Whether it be rain, wind, hail, or snow; the polymer material is more resistant to damage overall. In areas like Indianapolis, where storm damage is not unheard of, this is becoming an increasingly popular option.

Benefits of Polymer Modified Shingles:

  • Stronger than traditional shingles
  • Longer-lasting
  • More heat-resistant
  • Withstands hail more readily
  • Shingles will return to original shape even after impact or “denting” (such as during hail)
  • No cracking or curling with extreme temperatures
  • Allows rainwater to evaporate, minimizing the risk of rot or mold growth (i.e. resistant to rain damage)

As you are weighing your options, it is important to know the disadvantages of polymer modified shingles as well. With a comprehensive picture of the pros and cons, you can better decide on the best choice for you.

Advantages of Polymer Shingles

Downsides of Polymer Modified Shingles:

  • Higher upfront cost
  • Longer installation time
  • Bonding shingles to the roof requires particular care
  • Heavier initial weight
  • Not available in many colors

Again, every homeowner’s situation is different, but we find that these benefits far outweigh the few disadvantages in most cases. Even when it comes to the aesthetics, although there are minimal choices, there is a span of neutrals that match most home colors (and again, they do not look any different than traditional asphalt shingles!).

Comparing Cost

While it depends on the specific shingle purchased and the roofer you work with, the general cost to install an asphalt roof is between $4-$6 per square foot in the Indianapolis area. The average size of a roof is about 1,500 square feet, so if you choose to install with this material and you have an average-size home, you are looking at approximately $6,000-$9,000 to install the new roof. Polymer modified shingles run between $7 and $10 per square foot, so for the same size home, this comes out to around $10,500-$22,500. These are rough estimates, of course, and depend on the specific shingle manufacturer.

Weighing Your Options: Is It Worth It?

At first glance, the cost of polymer modified shingles can cause a bit of sticker shock, but there are a few other factors to consider.

First, polymer modified shingles have a much longer lifespan—up to 50 years, compared to the 25-30 years for 3-tab asphalt shingles. So although you may end up paying less up front for asphalt shingles, you will likely have to replace the entire roof again in about half the amount of time you would if you chose polymer modified shingles. And the older your shingles get, the more compromised they become, with a higher likelihood of being damaged due to a storm.

Second, most home insurance providers offer discounts up to 20% to homeowners with polymer modified shingles. Why? Because they know that in the case of extreme weather, the polymer modified shingles are much less likely to suffer significant damage. Again, although you’re paying a higher installation cost, you are saving money in other areas that make the two options much more comparable in cost.

The Bottom Line

At Indy Roof & Restoration, we often recommend upgrading to polymer modified shingles for these reasons. The flexibility, durability, lifespan, aesthetics, combined with the ability to get a discount on homeowner’s insurance—they all add up to a pretty good deal.

With that being said, we also know that it’s not one size fits all. What works for you may be different than what works for another customer. However, this is our general recommendation for most typical situations.

We encourage you to ask your roofer about polymer modified shingles to determine if it is the right option for your home.

Roof Installation in Indianapolis

If you are located in Indianapolis or the surrounding neighborhoods, Indy Roof & Restoration offers specialized guidance and expert knowledge on selecting the right roofing material for your needs. We cater our recommendations to each individual customer, and we are happy to answer any questions you may have.

Our team offers a variety of quality roofing products. Additionally, we pride ourselves on our top-of-the-line equipment and advanced roofing technology that helps us complete the job well while respecting your property. We take special care to protect your home and yard while we work.

Aaron Christy

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