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What should Virginia Homeowners know about Shingle Warranties?


Shingle manufacturers provide product warranties against manufacturing defects ranging from twenty (20) to forty (50) years and beyond. The warranties will cover defects such as thermal splitting, some cases of granule loss, cupping, and curling. It is very important that you ask for and receive a copy of the manufacturer’s written material warranty before making a decision on whose material you’d like to use. Warranties are generally for materials only. Labor is rarely included so if your roof materials fail, you’ll have to pay a roofer to install the new shingles. Warranties rarely, if ever, cover what are known as “incidental and consequential” damages resulting from material failure. “Incidental and consequential” damageas are those that occur to the interior of the building. If anything on the inside of the building gets damaged, you or your insurance company will have to pay for it. Warranties are also commonly prorated and non-transferable. This means that if you have twenty year shingles and they fail after ten years, you’ll be reimbursed for half the cost of the materials. Non-transferable means that if you sell your house, the warranty will be voided.

Some shingle manufacturers are offering NDL (No Dollar Limit) warranties for added costs of around 4.5 cents to 6.5 cents per square foot. These warranties may or may not cover all damages and labor costs.

Shingle manufacturers will not warrant their products against “Acts of God or Nature” such as hurricanes, hail storms, severe winds usually in excess of 50 mph, tornadoes, earthquakes, etc. Nor will shingle manufacturers honor their material warranty if the products are improperly installed, if there is improper roof ventilation, if there is equipment installation or structural changes after roof completion, or if there is heavy foot traffic on or over the roof.

For specific warranty information, ask your contractor to provide a sample warranty of the materials he installs.


Types of asphalt shingles include, but are not limited to: