Wind and hail damage are two things no homeowner wants to experience. Along with the frightening experience of being caught in a major storm, there is the aftermath that follows. Often, that can include substantial damage to property both on the roof and in the home.
Keep reading to learn what to look for and a list of tips. If you’ve been in the eye of a storm, these will help you avoid mistakes down the road.
Get a roof inspection after the storm.
If your home has been in the path of a storm recently or in the past, there are reasons to have your roof inspected. Your roof is the first line of defense when protecting your property’s exterior and the possessions in your home. Moisture, mold, leaks, and more can cause many long-term problems if not addressed quickly.
Regardless of the type of roof you have, asphalt shingles, metal, etc., an inspection is an easy and necessary step to take after a storm passes. Often hail, wind, and flood damage will be covered by an insurance policy, so don’t delay in protecting your home.
How do I know if my roof has hail and wind damage?
If your home has been through a hail and wind storm, you’re likely wondering if you’ve sustained damage. Things like missing shingles, leaks, wood rot, and more can occur when a big hail storm strikes. The first thing to do is stay on the ground and call a professional. While a roof may look safe, much of the damage that can occur is not visible at first. Climbing up on the roof is one of the biggest mistakes a homeowner can make. A damaged roof is an unsafe roof.
There are a few things to look for from the ground, and it’s essential to do so. Insurance policies often cover both wind damage and hail damage, and documenting what you see after the wind and hail have passed can be helpful when filing a claim. We recommend surveying your roof damage from the ground and walking around your property to assess the storm damage.
Make a note of what you see and take pictures of the damage to share with your insurance company and roofing contractor. The following section will cover some common signs of damage that you can look for around your home and on your roof.
What damage should I look for after a wind and hail storm?
While not all roof damage is evident from below the roof itself, there are some common signs you can look for around your home after a storm. Missing shingles are just the beginning. We’ve included a list of tips that any homeowner can use to spot signs of wind and hail damage. Be sure to document anything you notice and share it with your team of professionals.
Signs of Hail Damage
Missing Granules – granules are the rough parts of roof shingles. If you’ve ever felt a shingle, you may have noticed its sandpaper-like texture. When hail hits your roof, it can cause the granules to become loose and fall off. This results in the asphalt layer becoming exposed prematurely, which can lead to premature aging.
You may notice these missing granules by looking at the roof itself. You may also find them sprinkled about your yard and driveway. This is an obvious sign of hail damage and a good reason to schedule an inspection for your roof damage right away.
Cracked Shingles – hail can impact the roof at high speeds, causing significant cracking. This can also happen to other roof types, like tile and wood. Once roof material has cracks from hail, it can cause bare spots. These spots and the cracked materials mean that your shingles can no longer protect your roof correctly from additional weather events. If you notice cracks, it’s a sign to call an expert and have an assessment.
Shingles Out of Place – if you notice spots in your roof where shingles are hanging at an angle or missing altogether, that is a sign your roof has sustained hail damage. Like the granules, you may also notice shingles that were blown off on your front lawn and around the house. Obviously, missing shingles is a clear sign of home damage and should be addressed as soon as possible to avoid a more significant problem to your roof and interior belongings.
Dented Gutters and Downspouts – Sometimes, damage to your roof may not be obvious after a hail storm. But other elements can’t hide the problems as easily. As you walk around your home and complete your assessment, pay special attention to gutters and downspouts. If you notice dents and dings, it’s an indicator that your roof likely sustained similar damage. The same is true if your gutters suddenly begin to get clogged. Your gutters may be filled with shingle granules that blew off in the storm.
Signs of Wind Damage
Missing Granules – missing granules can occur from a wind storm, just like they can from hail. Look to your roof for apparent spots of missing granules, as well as your lawn and gutters. There are many areas these granules can hide. Anytime these granules come off of your shingles, you have likely sustained roof damage.
Curling Shingles – high winds can cause significant damage to pressure points of your roof, such as the edges. Roofs often show this damage by curling. Look for a little roll at the edges of shingles as evidence that the winds came through and wreaked havoc. Not only does the lack of strength cause problems when this happens, but it can also open your roof up to water intrusion and, ultimately, water damage.
Missing Shingles – just like hail damage, roof components in your yard are a sure sign of damage. High wind can cause the materials to dislodge and fly off of your roof, landing in your lawn and driveway. This is especially true in extreme wind storms. If your roof is missing materials after a storm, your roof is vulnerable, and you need to get a professional onsite as soon as possible.
Soffit and Fascia Damage – these elements keep the water flowing off of your roof. They can protect you from leaks and other pests coming in. This is not true if they’ve been damaged. If things look bent, off, or are missing completely, schedule a roof inspection quickly.
Crooked Chimney – if the chimney is no longer straight, the wind might have been the culprit. If the storm was strong enough to bend this element, chances are you may also be missing some of the sealing around the chimney that protects you from water intrusion.
Incoming Water – This sign of damage will likely be found inside your home. Look for any discoloration, streaking, drips, or obvious leaks. All of these are a sign that your roof is in desperate need of repair or replacement.
Can hail and wind damage a roof?
As we’ve uncovered above, the answer is an absolute yes. A wind storm and hail storm are both players that can cause significant roof damage. Outside of storm chasers, very few of us get excited about the prospect of a significant weather event in our area, and that’s for a good reason. Your home is one of your biggest assets, and it’s wise to protect it. Even with an insurance policy to cover your losses, storm and roof repairs can disrupt your life.
At CCI, we’re committed to getting our customers the quick response they need after a storm. From a free, no-cost, no-obligation inspection to expert contractors that can help with proper repairs and roof replacements. We understand the importance of protecting your home or business.
Should I fix hail damage and wind damage on my roof?
The answer is yes. Unchecked damage can be a problem for many reasons, not least of which is that minor problems can become major over time. Let’s say a homeowner chooses not to get an inspection or file an insurance claim after a storm. Perhaps they don’t see any damage and assume that everything is ok. The problem is that much of the damage is unseen and requires an expert assessment to determine what needs repairing. Over time, that minor claim or roof issue can become a major problem, requiring an entire roof replacement. Maybe it’s just a small drip in the attic that the homeowner never sees. Until one day, it’s a major leak requiring a significant investment.
Another reason to get work done quickly is to make sure it’s covered by home insurance. Many insurance companies have a time limit that a homeowner can file a claim in the United States after an event. After the time limit expires, your insurance policy may no longer be liable, pushing the total cost of repair – or replacement – onto you! Claims should be filed quickly and properly to ensure coverage.
Another good reason homeowners inspect their property, and file insurance claims is for peace of mind. It’s valuable to know what damage may have occurred and if you have an issue that can be fixed before it becomes a major issue.
Most professional roof companies offer a free assessment for your roof, so don’t put off an inspection or insurance claims that can protect your home, save you money and give you peace of mind.
Hail and wind damage to your roof? Here’s who to call first.
If you’ve experienced a storm, call a professional roofing company to inspect your roof shingles and materials. Homes that have sustained damage need immediate attention from an expert with an eye to spot problems – whether obvious or not. From hail impact marks to granule loss to vinyl siding damage, the CCI team is trained to spot the repercussions of hailstorms on a home.
Most reputable roofing companies will offer a free inspection of properties for homeowners. This no-obligation offer can help you understand the effects of hail storms, wind speed, and more on your home – from roofs to windows to siding.
If you have homeowners insurance, you should also consider your homeowners insurance cover as soon as possible. Your insurance company may have time limits, so filing an insurance claim for roof damage, hail damage, etc., should occur quickly. Once you’ve filed a claim with your home insurance, an adjuster will come out to inspect your home and possible hail and wind damage. If your insurance adjuster approves a claim, your roofing contractor can provide the information from their report. Claims information is important for you, the insurance adjuster, and your contractor.
Roofing Contractors and Insurance Companies
Most often, your insurance adjuster will coordinate with your roofing contractor during claims. At CCI, we regularly work with the customer’s insurance company and the insurance adjuster on a claim. We even use software that is familiar to most insurance agents so that the information is usable and helpful. Don’t delay if you’ve sustained hail impacts or have major storms in your area. It’s best to assess roofing systems right away and avoid future problems.
For some claims, your insurance policy may dictate the roofing contractor you must use. If that is the case, take the time to look up the business and make sure they are a reputable contractor in the local areas. Some insurance companies are known as “storm chasers.” After a storm, they show up in the local area and complete the work but then disappear soon after. Regardless of whether or not you’re filing a home insurance claim, know who will be working on your property and that they are an expert.
You can do this by looking the company up online. Search for reviews of past customers who have used them for hail storm damage or significant repairs.
If need be, you can request an exception from your homeowner’s insurance or another option to make sure you get the best care for your home.
Is my roof covered by insurance?
Most often, the answer is yes. That is exactly the type of insurance claim your premiums should cover.
Wind and hail are typically considered an act of God that falls under most insurance claims from homeowners. Once you file a claim, an insurance adjuster will come to your property and assess the damage. They may also work with the roofing contractor you’ve asked to complete an inspection. The insurer will often be able to quickly let you know what is covered after you file a claim.
If you’re worried about an increase in premiums if you file a hail claim, you may be protected. Typically, insurance claims related to an act of God cannot legally result in your premiums being increased.
An insurance claim will make sense if the damaged area is significant and will exceed the deductible. For example, if you discover that the wind direction only slightly impacted your home, it may not be worth filing a claim. Let’s say the damage can be repaired for $1,000, but your deductible is $1,500. It could be wiser to pay for the repair out of pocket.
Your insurer likely covers major roof damage and replacements caused by hail. And if for any reason they’re not, you can retain a public adjuster. A public adjuster is an advocate on your behalf who will negotiate with your insurer for a claim that should have been covered. They can also negotiate for a larger amount if appropriate. This is not insurance fraud. Insurance fraud is when someone attempts to receive insurance money for something not covered or misleads the insurance company intentionally. A public adjuster helps you get what your insurance company has committed to providing and holds them accountable. Public adjusters have different roles in each state, so review the options in your area if your insurance company denies your claim or you believe you need an advocate on your side.
If you’ve survived hail damage and wind damage, we can help. Our team of professional contractors has a menu of services and can support damage and projects of all sizes. We’ll work alongside your insurance company and your insurance claims to complete repairs as soon as possible. We support projects for your home, from roofs to windows, doors, and more.
Click here to schedule your free, no-cost, no-obligation inspection today.