A Guide to Identifying and Dealing with Hail Damage

If there is a weather event that can cause real roofing damage, it’s hailstorms. Hail does not always last that long, but it can leave behind tremendous damage from denting vehicles to shattering windows. However, the roof may be the one that most vulnerable to hail damage.

Roofs work hard to protect homes from the elements, but hailstorms can pack a real punch. That is why you should never wait until your roof has deteriorated and water damage reaches inside your home to get a roof repair.
The first important step to keep your roof in the best condition is identifying the sustained damage caused by the hailstorm. Unfortunately, many homeowners often struggle with recognizing hail damage on their roofs. Here are a few signs of hail damage that you need to keep an eye on.

Granule Loss

Granules are the sandpaper-like part of the shingle. It is designed to protect the asphalt coating from UV rays, add aesthetic beauty, and provide fire resistance. Severe bruising of asphalt shingles in a hail event can result in granule loss, making your roof vulnerable and accelerating its aging. However, granule loss does not always equate to damage.

Sometimes, it is simply an indicator that weathering has taken place. Shingles tend to shed granules as they age as the adhesive bond deteriorates and releases granules more easily. If you want to find out if the cause of the granule loss is due to hail, take a look in your gutters and downspouts after a hailstorm to see if any granules have come off your shingles. If you see exposed roofing felt or plywood sheathing, you have hail damage.

Cracks in the shingles

As roofs age, shingles will also become weak and brittle. That is why they can easily crack during a hail storm. Hard hail impacts can grip shingles and cause cracks, leading to exposure and tears. In turn, your shingles won’t be able to protect your roof from the weather effectively. It can even become the source of water leakage.
Identifying cracks in your shingles is manageable. When you’re expecting your roof, keep an eye out for shingles with obvious breaks or curls in them. You may need to run your hand over them for some shingles to identify the damage, as some cracks would not be visible to the naked eye.

Bruising

Bruising commonly occur with hail that measures 1”. The bruises are not always obvious visibly but should be addressed upon discovery. If the damage is severe enough, your shingles may be already starting to decay. On the other hand, the bruises can also lead to creating holes in your shingles. Either way, the damage will be enough to leave your roof vulnerable to nature’s elements.

You can easily confirm the existence of the bruises by running your hand over the shingles. Feel for dimples or indentations in it. The bruise should have a soft, spongy feel similar to a bruised apple.

Dented gutters or downspouts

Due to the weight and speed of hailstones, it can have a significant impact when it hits the roof. Hail can leave dents in your shingles, but the marks can also show up on your gutters and downspouts after a hailstorm. Depending on the size of the hail, the dents can range from very obvious to small enough to be almost indiscernible.

Taking action will not always be necessary. Minor dents aren’t all that serious, but these types of damage may mean more significant problems up in your roof in many instances. Big marks that start to show can begin affecting your roof’s function. Still, it should be immediately addressed even if they don’t look serious about ensuring your roof’s integrity isn’t compromised.

Handling Roof Damage from Hail Storms

As hailstorms can be destructive, it is urgent to repair hail damage as soon as possible. However, it can compromise the structural integrity of your roof and ultimately lead to leaks that can cause severe water damage inside your home. That is why you should take these steps to handle this damage after examining your roof.

Contact your Insurance Company

Calling your insurance agent and letting them know that your roof has been damaged by hail should be your first step. Roof repairs for hail damage can get extensive and expensive. Fortunately, most insurance policies cover storm-related damages, including hail damage, which can help lower the price you need to pay for those repairs.

Your report will start the claim procedures and bring in an adjuster to assess the damage along with the need and extent of repairs. Keep in mind the possibility that your insurance company may not fully cover the associated expenses, so you might have to pay for this difference. However, your insurer will let you know the sort of repairs covered with your claim.

Hiring an Expert

After calling in your insurance company, finding a great roofing contractor should be your next move. You could handle the repairs independently, but roofing professionals are not just helpful for roof repairs and replacements. They can also help you survey the damage. Roofing contractors are trained to find the trouble areas you might have overlooked, which can be helpful when facing hefty repair costs.

Additionally, many have prior experience in dealing with hail damage insurance claims. They can give an accurate estimate to confirm the assessment of your insurance company. You don’t have to worry about the cost because inspections are free. However, you have to make sure you’re working with a licensed and insured company and not someone offering door-to-door roof repairs after a storm.

These roofers, referred to as storm chasers might offer discounts and promises that are just too good to pass up. Unfortunately, most of the time, their offers are too good to be true. These companies are likely to be looking for a quick buck without doing the work. That is why it is essential to find a roofing contractor that you trust.

Fahey Roofing Contractors has the experienced and skilled contractors you need to help you with any necessary roof repairs and roof replacement. We serve various areas in West Virginia and Ohio. If you have questions or concerns, visit our website or contracts us at (304) 826-1323 for West Virginia or (740) 523-0380 for Ohio.

 

A-Guide-To-Identiying-and-Dealing-with-Hail-Damage-Infographic