A hail storm coming to your area is a stressful time for any homeowner. Not only do you have to find a safe place for your car and bring any breakable items inside, you also have to consider your roof. And unfortunately, there’s no way to protect your roof when a hail storm strikes.
Hail storms are not always synonymous to roof damage, but if the hail is big enough, it can cause severe damage to your roof and home. Depending on the size of the hail, it can cause damage to your shingles, roof vents, and roof flashing, and compromise their integrity. In this article, we will discuss the Signs of Hail Damage on a Roof, as well as what size hail can cause destruction, and how to spot any damage without ever getting on your roof.
Table of Contents
– Signs of Hail Damage on a Roof
– What Size Hail Will Damage a Roof?
– How to Spot Hail Damage on a Roof From the Ground
– What to Do When There’s Hail Damage on Your Roof
– Hiring a Contractor to Handle Hail Damage on a Roof
Signs of Hail Damage on a Roof
When looking for signs of hail damage on a roof, one of the more obvious steps is to check the shingles. Hail can cause dents and dings on your roof, and compromise the integrity of your shingles. The dents can be noticeable, especially if you know what you’re looking for. A reputable and experienced roofing contractor shouldn’t miss this tell-tale sign of hail damage on a roof, but even if large dents aren’t spotted, that doesn’t necessarily mean your roof doesn’t have hail damage.
Other signs of hail damage on a roof can be seen in any metal areas on your roof. Dents, dings, and splatter marks on your roof vents, gutters, roof flashing, and other roof penetrations are a strong indication of hail damage. If your roof has any of these markers, there’s a good chance that your roof has sustained storm damage, and that you will need to file a homeowner’s insurance claim.
What Size Hail Will Damage a Roof?
When discussing hail damage on a roof, you may be wondering what size the hail needs to be in order to cause damage. A lot of little hail can definitely impact your roof and shorten its lifespan over time, especially if hail storms are common in your area.
However, hail needs to be a pretty decent size in order to damage your roof badly enough to lead to a replacement. With that being said, hail that is about one inch in diameter, or bigger, is enough to warrant an insurance claim and a roof replacement.
How to Spot Hail Damage on a Roof From the Ground
Now that you know what hail damage on a roof looks like, as well as what size hail is enough to justify an insurance claim, let’s discuss how to spot hail damage on a roof from the ground. While a roofing contractor can spot hail damage on your roof with ease during a roof inspection, we do not recommend getting up there yourself to take a look.
If you’re inexperienced when it comes to roofing, then walking on your roof can be extremely dangerous and cause injury. There is no reason to risk your safety and get on your roof to check for damage if you don’t have experience walking on roofs. This is especially true since your insurance company will send someone out to do the job, but we understand wanting to do your due diligence before filing a claim in the first place.
With that being said, there are ways to spot hail damage on a roof without ever getting on the roof yourself. Hail storms will typically cause collateral damage that can be spotted from the ground. If you notice any of the following signs of hail damage, then it’s highly likely that your roof has sustained damage, as well:
- Dings on your garage door
- Holes in the screens on your windows
- Dings on any painted wood or shutters
- Splatter marks or dings on your AC unit, electric meter, or grill
- Dents on your car
- Dents to your mailbox and any other metals on your property
- Dents in your downspouts that are above the 5-foot mark (eliminating the lawnmower as the cause)
And that’s just to name a few! And noticing any of these signs doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s extensive hail damage on a roof, but it does mean that your roof should be checked out. This is the perfect time to call your insurance adjuster and file a claim for possible roof damage.
What to Do When There’s Hail Damage on Your Roof
So, let’s say you’ve discovered hail damage on a roof. If this is the case, you may be wondering what to do next. The first thing you need to do in this instance is to call your insurance company. Many homeowners believe they should call a roofing contractor first, but that’s not the case.
While it’s always good to have a reputable contractor in mind to handle the job, the first thing you need to do is call your insurance company. After speaking with your insurance company, they will inform you of the next steps. They will either send out an adjuster to inspect the damage themselves, or will advise you to contact a roofing company for a hail damage inspection.
If the insurance company sends out an adjuster, they’ll perform an inspection and either approve your claim or tell you that they didn’t find enough hail damage to warrant a claim. If your claim is approved, then that would be the time to hire a vetted roofing contractor that has experience with insurance claims. If your claim is not approved, then we recommend asking the insurance company to send out a different adjuster for a second opinion.
If the second adjuster denies your claim and doesn’t find hail damage on your roof, yet you are adamant about the sustained damage, then you can have a structural engineer come out for an inspection. If they find damage, they will send proof to your insurance company, claiming there is enough hail damage to warrant a roof replacement.
With that being said, it’s important to mention that the insurance company holds all of the power when it comes to approving or denying your insurance claim. Even after taking all of these steps, the insurance company has the final say when it comes to moving forward with your claim. Your roofing contractor, unfortunately, cannot get your claim approved, but there are things they can do to help.
Hiring a Contractor to Handle Hail Damage on a Roof
If your insurance company tells you to contact a roofer for suspected hail damage on a roof, as opposed to sending out an adjuster, the roofer will come out for an inspection. When a contractor is inspecting your roof, they will document any signs of hail damage, and submit it to your insurance company. The insurance company will then send out an adjuster to confirm your roofer’s findings. If the adjuster agrees with your roofer after their inspection, then your claim will be approved.
All of this is to say that the contractor you hire can play a vital role in how smoothly the insurance claim process goes. We highly recommend hiring a contractor who is also an insurance claims specialist, like Elite Exteriors. They will know what to look for, how to properly present information to your insurance company, take the stress of the claims process off your shoulders, will be in your corner to make sure your roof gets everything it needs, and even supplement your claim, if necessary.
Now you know the signs of hail damage on a roof, what size hail can cause substantial damage, and how to spot potential hail damage on a roof from the ground level. This is all crucial information when deciding if an insurance claim needs to be filed. You are also now aware of the insurance claims process and what it entails, as well as the importance of hiring a roofing contractor that has experience with insurance claims.
Elite Exteriors is proud to be insurance claims specialists, and are happy to answer any insurance questions you may have, and to bring your roof back to its pre-storm condition. Elite Exteriors is the Southeast’s premier residential and commercial resource for unparalleled service, superior craftsmanship, and incomparable quality; and it’s all backed by an unprecedented lifetime labor and materials warranty! Give us a call today at 470-350-3024 for a NO-COST initial consultation and inspection, or fill out our online form for more information!