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Best Roofing Material for Hail-Prone Regions in 2021

This year's hail season has the potential to be more severe than usual due to a climate pattern called La Niña.

As described by NOAA, La Niña is a climate cycle associated with cooler ocean surface temperatures across the east-central equatorial Pacific. Since the atmosphere and the ocean are closely intertwined, La Niña has far-reaching impacts on weather patterns, including severe thunderstorms, hail, and high-velocity winds that can intensify hail impact damage on roofs and structures.

If you live in a hail-prone region, now is the ideal time to upgrade your roof. Read on to learn why metal is considered one of the best roofing materials for hail.

The Highest Rating for Hail Impact Damage

Founded in 1903, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is a not-for-profit independent organization that tests and certifies products, including roofing materials. The UL2218 Impact Rating is considered the national standard for roof impact resistance.

Roofing materials are rated Class 1 through Class 4 based on their resistance to the impact of steel balls dropped from varying heights. A UL2218 Class 4 Impact Rating is the highest possible rating for impact resistance.

The Class 4 test simulates the damaging impact of a 2” hailstone by dropping a 2” steel ball onto the same spot twice from 20’ high. In order to achieve a Class 4 rating, the roofing material cannot exhibit any signs of fracture.


If you’re in a hail-prone region, you’ll want to make sure the roofing material you select has a UL2218 Class 4 Impact Rating.

DECRA Metal Roofing products have excelled through some of the harshest weather conditions around the world, and our products are rated as UL2218 Class 4 Impact Resistant. We take testing a step further by conducting a NBS Series 23 “Hail Resistance of Roofing Materials” testing with ice ball compressed air guns. The results from this independent lab testing?

Terralab Engineers International found that, “DECRA products withstood hailstones up to 3 inches in diameter without damage. The products also withstood without damage by impact from 4 inch hailstones. The 4 inch hailstones are not part of the NBS Series 23 and were shot for client information purposes only.”

Hail-Resistant Roofing: Conventional Roofing Materials vs. Metal Roofing

Just walking on a clay tile roof for maintenance can lead to fractured tiles, so you can imagine the damage that hailstones at high-velocity winds can cause. Wood shingles and shakes fare better, but as wood ages it becomes more brittle and can split, making the roof more susceptible to hail damage and wind uplift. Similar to wood, asphalt shingles initially fare well against hail, but shingles wear out quickly and become increasingly susceptible to damage from small hailstones.

Durability and longevity are essential components of a hail-resistant roof. This is why metal roofing is considered one of the best roofing materials for hail-prone regions. It’s also one of the main reasons metal is used so frequently on commercial buildings and industrial facilities. But industrial standing-seam or corrugated metal roofs lack the aesthetic elements that most homeowners require.

The Stone-Coated Steel Difference 

DECRA’s manufacturing process blends the strength of steel with an acrylic-based stone-coating formula to achieve the same look of asphalt, tile, or wood roofing without sacrificing durability. Stone-coating produces a durable roofing product that comes in a wide variety of colors, textures, and shapes to suit the design requirements of any style.

What to Look for in a Warranty 

First and foremost, you’ll want to make sure the manufacturer of your roof has been in business for a substantial amount of time. Warranties mean nothing when the roofing manufacturer goes out of business. As the original manufacturer of stone-coated metal roofing since 1957, you can rest assured knowing that DECRA has withstood the test of time.

Additionally, you’ll want to read the fine print. Some warranties fail to cover any type of damage from hail. Be sure to closely read the terms of a “lifetime” warranty as well. Some manufacturers offer “lifetime” warranties but prorate the amount of coverage, so your roof may only be warrantied at 30% value in just a few short years.

DECRA Metal Roofing products come standard with a Lifetime Limited Warranty for hail penetration up to 2.5 inches in diameter and the warranty is transferable for 20 years should you sell your home.

Upgrade to DECRA Metal Roofing

DECRA Metal Roofing bridges the gap between durability and beauty. Learn how DECRA can protect your home from hail, and anything else Mother Nature has to offer, by contacting us today.