Has a hailstorm blown through your area? When hail strikes your roof, it can do a lot of damage—and unfortunately, homeowners don’t always realize that there are issues with their roofing until after a leak occurs. But that doesn’t have to be you. If you’ve had hail damage, it’s important to act fast to make repairs so that your roof can continue to provide strong protection for your home.
Here’s what you need to know so you can deal with hail damage and ensure your roof is in top shape.
Even Small Hail Can Cause Big Problems for Roofs
Hail can come in many sizes—from as small as a pea to as big as a tennis ball or even larger. And a hailstorm can be very brief, just a few seconds—or as long as several minutes or more. In general, the larger the hailstones and the longer the storm, the more roof damage you’re likely to incur.
But even smaller hail can cause you issues. If there’s been damage before that wasn’t addressed, or if the hailstones hit in just the right way, your roofing or flashing can be marred, allowing moisture to sneak in. Over time, that issue will continue to get worse unless you fix it, so it pays to treat hail damage as serious.
What Happens When Hail Damages Your Roof
Your first step in addressing this problem is to do an inspection of your roof from the ground. Get binoculars and stand at a distance to safely see what you can make out. You’ll likely notice some of these common issues that arise when hail harms roofing:
Signs of Hail Damage
- Torn or cracked asphalt shingles
- Missing roof shingles
- Exposed underlayment
- Parts of roofing scattered on the ground
- Dented metal or asphalt roofing
- Cracked or broken glass in a skylight
- Dents on metal flashing and gutters
- Shingle granules in gutters
- Wind damage if hail was accompanied by high winds—such as dislodged flashing, gutters, and missing shingles
Problems Caused by Unaddressed Hail Damage
Once hail affects your roof, a host of other issues can result. Those dents and cracks on your shingles can allow moisture to sneak underneath your outer roofing layer. That water can then do lots of harm, including:
- Water leaks
- Wood rot
- Mold growth
- Exposure of your attic to the elements
- Obstructed roof vents
- Blocked gutters, leading to ponding around your foundation
Leaving these issues as-is just means moisture can do more of its dirty work in your home’s structural elements. Hidden water leaks, even small ones, can weaken and rot the decking and attic beams that support your roof. Insulation can get damp. Mold can grow. If your roof and gutters don’t drain right, you could end up with foundation problems.
None of this is worth ignoring—as it only increases the likelihood that your home’s value and structural soundness will eventually be affected.
Address Hail Damage Quickly
The bottom line is—if there’s a problem with your roof, it needs to be addressed promptly to stop issues from growing worse. There’s not much worse for your home than hidden moisture damage that is allowed to increase and compound. Fixing hail damage is well worth the investment, as it stops moisture from affecting your home’s structure.
Proactive Ways to Safeguard Your Roof after a Hailstorm
Determine How Intense the Hailstorm Was
If the hail that affected your home was under half an inch in size, chances are any damage you have is mostly cosmetic, such as tiny scratches on your shingles that do not require repair.
However, if the hail is an inch or larger, or if you are seeing significant cracks in roofing, that is a recipe for significant damage. Add to that high winds, and it’s very likely your roof may be in danger of leaking.
In any case, checking your roof for damage after the storm passes is essential.
Have a Professional Roof Inspection by a Local Company
It’s easy to put off an inspection, especially if you can’t see any obvious hail damage from the ground. But your roof is best seen from above, and climbing atop your roof is best performed by pros who do it all the time and know where to step to stay safe and avoid causing problems.
Having a pro local roofer like us do an evaluation pays off in the long run, because we can assess how serious the damage is and recommend options that will help you avoid leaks and mold. And if you don’t actually have any damage to speak of, we can tell you that too—and put your mind at ease that your home is secure.
Contact Your Insurance Company
When your roof is affected by a severe storm, you may be a candidate for making a claim with your homeowner’s insurance company. If the hail damage has affected over 50% of your roof, you will likely be eligible for a full roof replacement. To get the ball rolling, call your insurer as soon as you can.
When you call, confirm the key aspects of your policy:
- Learn whether you are covered for the actual cash value of your roof (which factors in depreciation) or its full replacement value.
- Check if your coverage includes bringing your roof up to current building codes.
- Find out what your deductible on hail and storm damage is. It may be different than your deductible for other types of damage.
- Ask what else you need to provide to back up your claim—such as photos, receipts, and estimates.
Ensure Your Roof Is in Top Shape Year-Round
Whether your roof has been damaged by a storm or it’s just aging and in need of an update, repairs or replacement can offer you fresh curb appeal and reliable protection that gives you confidence in your home’s condition.
At Best Choice Roofing, our local experts do it all—from inspections to repairs to new roof installations—so you can enjoy a beautiful, long-lasting roof. Check out our roofing services to learn more and discover the workmanship and care that puts us in the top 1% of roofing contractors in the U.S. according to Owens Corning. We look forward to serving you with excellence.