Ultimate Guide To IKO Shingles (For Homeowners)

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Ultimate Guide To IKO Shingles (For Homeowners)

Ultimate Guide To IKO Shingles (For Homeowners)

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IKO Asphalt Shingles entered the market in 1954. In the 60 years of the manufacturing company’s existence, it has grown to be a leading exporter of shingles worldwide.

The company has over 25 production plants in Europe, Canada, and the United States and sells roofing products to over 96 countries worldwide.

Despite the company’s large size, IKO shingles have had some unpopularity amongst consumers. Among other complaints, contractors complain that IKO asphalt shingles cannot withstand strong winds and have a poorly designed tar line. 

However, others love IKO due to their cost and size. Many roofers claim IKO offers the best “bang for the buck”.

Back to the negative -the tar line makes them hold moisture, which leads the roof to sometimes curl and appear poorly serviced.

In recent years, the company has come up with better shingles that are hugely improved, more serviceable, and more expensive than the poorly performing ones. 

A Point to Note: According to ClassActionsReported.com IKO has been in court for class-action lawsuits in the USA and Canada for its Cambridge AR roof shingles. Here is a copy of the court case. However, class-action roofing lawsuits are not limited to IKO, GAF has also seen it’s fair share of lawsuits. 

Would IKO Shingles Be Right For Your Home?

IKO shingles have been found defective somehow, and contractors may not always recommend them to homeowners. They certainly have some distinct advantages over other shingles in the market, such as Malarkey Shingles and GAF. The benefits listed here in this guide are seen from the perspective of homeowners, roofing contractors, and home inspectors. 

IKO offers ShieldPro Protection Plus+ Certification

IKO shield plus

IKO offers training to contractors to become certified installers, just like other competing brands do. Other than the training, IKO offers insurance and licensing to contractors who meet specific qualifications. The company provides brand licensing after a contractor has been installing shingles for five years and has not had a legal judgment in that time.

To become IKO certified, a contractor must have the right standing with Better Business Bureau and offer acceptable worker’s compensation liability and compensation. The contractor must also have satisfactory credit ratings with suppliers and have a legitimate business address. 

The IKO certification advantages a contractor in that he can charge higher for the services he offers. Having the certification allows customers to have more confidence in the services provided. 

Expert Tip : 

A roofing contractor who does not have an IKO license will be okay to work with if they have other recommended certification and good customer ratings in the community. Most can install shingles professionally if they are experienced. But IKO brand certified contractors are the best. They belong to an exclusive club of a select few and provide unmatched quality and commitment to excellence. 

When a customer chooses an IKO brand certified contractor, they are entitled to certain benefits such as extended warranties. IKO also pays for removing and recycling old shingles, which ends up saving you hundreds of dollars when you use a brand certified contractor. Getting an IKO certified contractor might be something to do, considering the significant saving the option offers. 

IKO Offers A Complete Roofing Solution, Not Just Shingles

IKO roofing solution offers more than just the outer covering of shingles. Their Pro 4 roofing system includes some components that work together seamlessly to provide you with an ideal roofing solution.

Here are the components of the IKO Pro 4 roofing system:

Eave Protection

ArmourGardGoldShield, and StormShield water and ice protectors are the second line of defense against ice dams and wind-driven rain that can cause costly damage. IKO recommends using this product for sealing around rake edges, hips, ridges, low pitch areas, vents, vents stacks, dormers, chimneys, and skylights.


These are RoofGard-Cool Grey or Stormtite, which are IKOs synthetic type of roofing underlayment. They are entirely water-resistant and are useful in shedding water that gets behind alternative roofing materials or shingles. It is recommended for total deck protection.

Starter Shingles

  • These are Leading Edge Plus starter strips compatible with any IKO shingle and come cut to size. They include a sealant strip at the bottom for a tight seal. 

Check this article to learn why you need starter shingles.

Ridge cap shingles

  • Ridge cap shingles are placed where roof planes meet. They protect the roof and enhance the home’s aesthetic appeal

IKO Shingles Come In A Wide Selection Of Colors

The roof to your home accounts for a significant 20% – 25% percent of your home’s exterior. Getting the right color blend that produces the right effect for your home is easy to do with IKO shingles. IKO shingles come in a wide range of colors, which allow you to do a lot to achieve the ideal results for your home.

With IKOs wide selection of colors, you can,

  • Coordinate with shutters and sliding, so that roof color is different from the rest of the exterior to achieve a visually balanced and aesthetically pleasing result. For instance, for a mild contrast, beige siding would go well with brown shingles. White siding would provide a more distinct difference from the brown shingles. 
  • Know when to use color blends. If your home has plain siding, you will need a blended color pattern to make your roof attractive. With a varied home siding, then color blended shingles may not be a good idea.


Here is the thing with competitors: Asphalt Shingles are produced in blends or solid colors. CertainTeed Landmark shingles are just deep green and have no variation. 

Landmark Heather Blend shingles are a mix of rust and brown tones too. 

Duration Designer shingles from Owens Corning are more varied in multiple blends. 

  • Achieve visual harmony with dark or light shingles. Dark colors may draw more attention than lighter colors may. Depending on what type of home you have, such as ranch homesmulti-level homes, or single-storeyed home, you can choose the best-colored shingle from IKOs vast selection. A single-story roof may appear ‘all roof’ if dark shingles are used. A two-story building can seem unbalanced with light-colored shingles, particularly if the top has a lower pitch, for instance, 4/12 or 6/12.
  • Compliment your home’s architecture or setting by choosing the right color to go with your home. Some home styles go with a specific look for the roof. Stately traditional homes go with dark blends or blacktops that match their elegant look. Floridian or South West flare homes have roofs that have the color of conventional clay tiles. For a nautical theme, a white beach house with red trim is complemented by a blue top. 


 Colors of IKO Dynasty Shingles

  • If you plan to sell your home at some time, having a house that is different from the rest in your neighborhood is not a good idea. You can choose a blend or color that is consistent with neighborhood standards. 
  • By considering the climate characteristics in the area where your home is located, you can choose the desired color for your roof from IKO’s wide range. The color of shingles can affect attic temperature by 40 degrees. Dark shingles absorb heat and are ideal for cool climates, while light-colored shingles reflect heat and match warmer climates.

A handy tip: where bright sunlight falls, using bold colors such as rich reds and dazzling blues. Sunshine makes light neutrals appear washed out.

  • You can be able to apply cool roof standards where the building code requires them. California’s Title-24 requires that residential properties have cool roofs, while a few other areas have related requirements. CoolRoof shingles are light-colored and highly reflective.

Home Inspector Ratings For IKO Shingles

Home inspectors choose IKO shingles because of their ability to withstand wear and tear. The features include the following,

  • Standard Wind Rating for most IKO shingles ranges between 60mph for 3-tab IKO Marathon shingles to 110mph (ASTM D3018 Class F) for most of their other products. With additional installations, the ratings can be raised to 130mph. 
  • A Class Fire rating for all IKO shingles, which is a top fire rating.
  • Algae resistance. All IKO shingles but Cambridge and Marathon cool colors have the ability to resist water staining for between five and ten years. They are warranted. 
  • Impact Resistance. The brand’s impact resistance shingles are IKO Cambridge IR. This is the brand’s only option. In a lab test, a 2″ diameter steel ball dropped twice from 12 feet onto the same spot does not damage the shingles. This gives them an impact rating of 4.

Options For Homeowners When Buying IKO Shingles

Homeowners who choose IKO have a wide choice. The company offers a vast selection of style and color blends. It manufactures asphalt shingles that provide the most affordable way to protect your home and property from the elements and harsh weather. 

Here is a plus: IKO products have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau in the USA, similar to that of competing companies Certain Tweed, Owens Corning, and GAF. In Canada, where the company has had lawsuits from dissatisfied customers, the BBB rating is B-.  

Here are the options available to a homeowner:

Designer collection

This is for homeowners with the high-end property. These luxury, architectural, laminated shingles are aesthetically pleasing and weatherproof your home. 

IKO Royal Estate Designer Shingles

The beefy lines in the shingles withstand wind exceptionally well. Shingles in this range include Armourshake (5 colors), Crowne Slate (2 colors), and Royal Estate(4 colors). 

Warranties for this range are limited lifetime with options to upgrade.

*Competitors in this range include GAF WoodlandMalarkey WindsorCertainTeed Belmont Owens Woodmoor, Corning Devonshire, and Tamko Heritage Woodgate (PDF).

Performance Collection

For your home in areas where weather extremes are experienced, IKO Nordic, Cambridge IR, and Dynasty are an ideal choice. They have an extra thick coating of weathering asphalt and fortified with the addition of ArmourZone, to reinforce the nailing zone against tears. 

They are different depending on the region and come in 6-11 colors. Warranties are limited lifetime but come with the option to upgrade. 

*Similar shingles from the competition include GAF Timberline Ultra HDTamko Heritage Premium (PDF), Owens Corning Duration DesignerCertainTeed Landmark Premium, and Malarkey Vista and Highlander

Architectural Collection

Shingles in this series include IKO Cambridge and IKO Cambridge cool. Both are similar, but IKO Cambridge Cool was designed to be Title 24 compliant in California. 

IKO Cambridge shingle

This the most popular among homeowners and contractors of what the company manufactures. Here is a quick video review you may find useful.

They come in 12 to 15 colors and are the most durable and resilient shingles available from IKO.

Competitors similar shingles include Tamko Heritage (PDF), GAF TimberlineOwens Corning DurationCertainTeed Landmark Premium, and Malarkey Legacy.

Traditional Collection

These were available in the market before all others and thus their name. They are also referred to as 3-tab and are the most basic to manufacture and, therefore, most cost-effective to purchase. 

IKO 3 Tab Shingles

3-Tab shingles are not what we generally recommend as we don’t see an advantage over architectural given that it is only 3%-5% cheaper.

In the IKO 3-tab series, it comes in 10 colors that are overall very standard to the industry. Available in this series as well are premium dimensional and mid-range architectural shingles. They come in ten colors, are classy and neat. 

They have a 25-year warranty. Shingles in this series include Marathon and Marathon Plus. 

*Similar shingles from the competition include GAF Royal SovereignOwens Corning SupremeCertainTeed XT25Dura-Seal AR, and Malarkey Dura-Seal.

IKO Warranties Are Rather Good:

IKO warranties are amongst the best in the market, with the top ones being easiest to qualify for than other brands. 

Here is a plus for IKO: a lifetime limited warranty covers 80% of IKO shingle lines. This is the highest percentage amongst leading shingle brands. 

A tip about warranties: To be covered by the best warranty, install the roof with one of the IKO hip and ridge shingle options. These are Hip & Ridge 12 Hip & Ridge Plus, or Ultra HP.

This is uniform across other brands. GAF requires at least two other of their components to be used. 

No Tear-Off No Problem: Other brands offer the best warranties only when there is a tear-off, which is not the case with IKO. 

CONS of IKO Shingles

IKO shingles are generally not top rated in the market. Contractors and homeowners alike have different complaints regarding the shingles. 

Consider this: One online review of the shingles suggests that contractors recommend IKO company products to cut corners and keep your money in their pockets. They recommend staying away from the Marathon and Cambridge brands of IKO shingles. 

IKO has introduced Dynasty into the market to improve the Marathon and Cambridge shingle brands, which are more expensive but much improved. Below we have a quick video going over some of the advantages of the Dynasty shingle.

Here below are other IKO shingles disadvantages:

Contractor Complaints

IKO shingles have a poorly developed tar line: Every shingle manufactured has a tar line. The tar line melts so that the shingles adhere to each other while on the roof in the sun.

When the shingles stick together on the roof, they are protected from the problems that arise from rain and windblown rain getting beneath them. IKO shingles are notorious for not adhering correctly while on the roof.

Expert Tip : 

Sealing strips must be about 70F while on the roof to adhere appropriately. 

When the sun is out and shinning properly, some roofers will install shingles when the temperatures are about 40F. Atlas recommends temperatures of at least 45-50F to install the shingles but only when the sun is out.

Did you know? Install IKO shingles when temperatures are at least 50F, and the sun is out. Winter and late fall installations of IKO shingles should be avoided unless there is a manual sealing procedure in place. 

Bear in mind that, IKO warranty suggests that shingles that don’t get direct sunlight or come into contact with sand or dust might never seal properly. IKO warranty states in caps that if the shingles do not seal right, there can be no limited wind resistance coverage for wind damage. 

The company’s point is that failing to seal is not a manufacturing defect and so is NOT IKO’s problem.

Another defect of IKO shingles is that they hold moisture badly and curl and splinter while on the roof. An experienced contractor can recommend a solution that will take care of this problem. 

Certainteed shingles and GAF last longer in the sunlight and are more durable. 

Homeowner's Concerns

Warranty transferability is a problem most homeowners face with the IKO brand. The warranty can only be transferred once in the first ten years. Transfer costs are $100 and include much paperwork. When a homeowner dies, the warranty ends. 

Did you know? : Roofing warranties are the toughest to stick with. 

Expert Tips: To avoid suing a manufacturer over defective shingles,

  1. Read the warranty.
  2. Ventilate your roof well since moisture and heat build-up in the attic causes major shingle failure.
  3. Hire an experienced contractor, perhaps one with a brand license, who also has a professional crew.  
  4. Make sure to tear off the existing roofing shingles, even if just minimally. Then ensure you use only the roofing components that the brand you choose recommends.

Costs Of Materials and Installation of IKO Shingles

Even before you buy shingles, you may want to know the installation costs. You will need accessories if what you are doing is adding a new layer to an existing roof.  

If you are putting up a new roof, you will need starter strips, underlayment, rake, and eave protection. 

Here are average labor costs per square foot and accessories costs for most brands. 

Accessories $5 – $15

Base installation labor costs: $125 – $250

If removing and replacing an old roof is required, it could cost about $1 to $4 per square foot.

Here are the prices of installing shingles to cover 100 feet:

3-Tab Shingles

Architectural Shingles

Performance Shingles

Premium Shingles


An IKO roof recommended by a reputable contractor could last up to 30 years. Without getting a recommendation from a reputable contractor, IKO might not be a good option. 

The company is working on improving its products, but still, some work needs to be done. Favorite brands in the market include Atlas – Pinnacle Pristine, GAF-Elk – Royal Sovereign, and CertainTeed – XT 25 in that order.

Did you know? : Installation is THE most crucial variable when it comes to the quality and longevity of your roof. There will be no need to consider other high-quality brands if your contractor and his team are experienced enough, and they recommend an IKO shingle line for your roof. 

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