What is Hail Damage?
Any roof damage caused by impact from hail precipitation can be categorized as hail roof damage. The visual proof of the damage will vary by roofing material but can include impact marks, loss of granules, and shingle splits.
Hail is an almost ever-present threat here in McKinney, TX. In fact, in 2019 there were 38 separate reports of hail making landfall in McKinney, TX. We have experienced numerous severe weather warnings due to potential hail conditions in the past 12 months alone and the surrounding areas aren’t safe either. To put it mildly; hail is a part of normal life in McKinney, TX and the nearby cities. And that is precisely the reason we offer professional hail roof damage repair here at Nimbus Roofing.
You can count on us for hail roof damage repair no matter how extensive the damage may be or what kind of roofing material you have installed. Hopefully, you won’t ever have to call us out for roof hail damage repair. And to that end we have composed this helpful guide to hail roof damage. We will be going over the warning signs of hail roof damage, what you can do about it and how to prepare your roof for impending hail storms. Read on for some helpful hail roof damage tips or give us a call any time to learn more about our services and how we can help fortify your roof.
Preparing for a Hail Storm
First and foremost, you have to understand that hail storms can be very dangerous. As recently as 2018, the Dallas-Fort Worth area was pummeled by a severe hail storm that produced stones that were 3 inches in diameter and caused 625 million dollars in damages. Hail stones of this size can easily cause great bodily injury and even fatality. So in a hail storm, you must first take shelter and make sure that your family is also protected.
Hail storms don’t just cause damage to the roof. Hail stones can be hurled through your windows at high speeds as well. So if you are taking shelter indoors where windows or glass doors are present it is a good idea to stay away from them. Don’t stand near windows, under skylights or near glass doors.
In order to protect your windows and other glass surfaces, you may want to board them up before a storm hits. You can procure plywood for a fairly cheap price and nail them to the framing of your window to protect them and avoid injury. Storm shutters are also a popular choice in McKinney and the nearby areas specifically for hail storms. They can be rolled up and down quickly in case of an oncoming hail storm, and they offer solid protection from damage.
And of course, you are going to want to park your cars inside your garage, under an awning or in a car port if possible. Hail stones can easily dent your car’s body, chip the paint and break through the windshield and windows.
Proactivity is always helpful for preventing hail storm damage. Before the winter months, take some time to look at your roof. Are there missing shingles? Do the shingles look like they are hanging on by a thread? Are they cracked or chipped? Do they look worn out? Are your roofing tiles cracked or crooked? All of these types of damages seemingly minor problems can result in thousands of dollars in roof repair costs so a little proactivity could save you a ton of money.
Inspecting your roof yourself may not be enough. If you are ever in doubt as to the condition of your shingles and whether they will hold up in a hail storm you should call a professional. Have your roof professionally inspected and make any necessary repairs. It may seem costly at first but you could be spending 3 or 4 times more after a hail storm has pushed through.
Brushing up on the details of your insurance policy is a good way to prepare for hail roof damage too. Take a look at your policy to see how much coverage you have. Most insurance policies do cover damage caused by hail and wind but you should still double check. Also, see what deductible plan you have chosen and check to see if you will need more coverage.
After the Storm
Once the storm has passed, it’s time to check out your roof. There are certain signs of hail roof damage that you should keep an eye out for. These signs include:
- Damage to Metal Components – Almost all roofs have one sort of metal component or another. These can include vents, flashing and metal seams or valleys that run along the seams of roofing materials. It is pretty easy to see hail damage on these metal surfaces. Check for dents of varying size on any existing metal surfaces of your roof. If you do see multiple dents, further damage may have been done to other areas of your roof.
- Missing Asphalt – If you have asphalt shingles on your roof (and millions of Texans do), take a close look at them after a hail storm. If you are seeing that some asphalt granules seem to have been stripped away, you may need to repair or replace them. You can check on the ground near the eaves of your roof as well. In hail storms, asphalt granules can be stripped from your shingles and washed onto the ground below. Also, if you can see the black substrate of the shingle, that means the granules have been washed off and the shingle needs to be replaced.
- Dimples in the Shingles – You should use your sense of touch when checking for hail roof damage. Run your hands slowly over some shingles. If you feel dimples or dents in them, they may need to be replaced. Some shingle materials like wood may also become split and cracked due to hail stone impact. If you can’t see any cracks or splits, carefully run your fingers over them just to be sure.
- Ridge Cap Damage – The ridge cap of your roof is also an easy indicator of hail roof damage because of its flat orientation. Ridge caps tend to take a considerable pounding (trust us, we have seen it time and time again as roofing contractors) in hail storms. Ridge cap damage usually manifests as dents.
One of the most important things to do after a hail storm is to have your roof professionally inspected. There may be things you can’t see with a cursory inspection that only a seasoned professional will know to look for. A professional will be able to not only identify obscure damage; but see where damage may occur after the fact. For example, ice dams are a serious threat to the structural integrity of your roof. Once hail stones melt on your roof, they can form ice dams on colder areas of the roof and destroy shingles. And once they have melted for good, they could cause water damage beginning days after a storm has passed. A professional will know to look for these and other dangers.
Getting in touch with your insurance provider and filing an insurance claim as soon as possible should also be a priority after a hail storm. Roofing insurance claims often take a long time to process because of all the paperwork and inspections. Not to mention the time for repairs so getting a jump on insurance claims as soon as possible is always the right thing to do.
Steps you Can Take
Once you have done your due diligence after a hail storm you can prepare yourself for the road ahead. One of the steps we often recommend homeowners to take is to get in touch with a roofing contractor. Give them a call and see if they provide free estimates. It is good to get multiple estimates so that you can compare them and even use them as leverage in price negotiations.
You must insist on licenses and bonding from any roofing contractor you work with. Doing so will give you your best shot at passing insurance inspections and getting on with your life. You should also opt for a roofing contractor that has multiple references to offer. Talk to past customers and see what kind of work they are capable of.
Of course, if you know that your hail roof damage is limited to a couple damaged or missing shingles, you can tackle the repairs yourself. Replacing shingles is a relatively simple and affordable process for DIYers. But it can be dangerous getting and working on your roof. If you have any doubts in your mind whether you can complete the job safely, it is better to hire a professional. And if the damage goes beyond replacing a few shingles, you need to contact a certified roofing contractor.
We hope our guide has been helpful and that you are better equipped to prepare yourself for, safely ride out and manage the effects of a hail storm. We are always on your side so if you ever need help with your roof, call us here at Nimbus Roofing.