Evaluating Your Roof After Severe Weather
Roofing is one of the most commonly damaged elements of a home during a storm. Evaluating whether or not there is damage to your roof, as well as the extent of the damage is a difficult process. However, there are a number of things that you can do to help simplify the process.
Check the Inside of Your Home
One of the first, and easiest things you can do in this situation is check the inside of your home for any visible damage. While water leaking from the roof is an obvious sign of damage, this problem can also manifest itself in less obvious ways. Checking your attic with the help of a good flashlight to identify any spots where the underside of the roof appears water-stained can help you identify and resolve potential leaks before the water has an opportunity to start coming through your ceiling.
Perform Regular Roof Inspections
If you have access to your roof, checking it every spring can help you evaluate the condition of your roof. Not only will you be able to look for any changes that may have occured since your last inspection, but will also allow you to spot any potential issues before they become bigger problems.
Here are some things to look for during your inspection:
- Missing/Broken Shingles: Depending on the type of roofing material you have, hail damage can result in either missing or broken shingles. If your roof has asphalt or fiberglass shingles, you will want to look for shingles that have missing pieces. If your roof has clay tiles, you will want to check for ones that are cracked or broken. If your roof has an armor plating, or is constructed of slate, this should not be a problem. If you find any missing or broken shingles, you will want to have your roofing replaced as soon as possible to prevent a leak from forming.
- Dents: Hail can also cause dents. On a metal roof, these dents will look similar to those on a car. If you have a shingled roof, these dents may remove some of the granules (the coarse, pebbly material) from the shingle. While dents may not need to be addressed immediately like missing or broken shingles, the damage still shortens the life of your roof and does still need to be replaced.
Consult a Qualified Roofing Inspector
If you do happen to spot an issue during your inspection, such as any wind or hail damage, you should always seek the help of a qualified roofing inspectors. While the results may vary in your area, a lot of professional roofing companies offer free inspections. A trained inspector will be able to tell the difference between storm damage and damage that may be the result of a worn or aging roof. They can also discover problems you may have overlooked, as well as educate you on your findings and make recommendations on how you should proceed.
Consult your Homeowner’s Insurance
Homeowner’s insurance will usually pay for damage to your roof as a result of hail and sometimes high winds. However, they will not pay for replacing your roof if it’s damage is just the result of it being old and worn. We recommend calling your insurance company immediately after finding the damage, or consulting a roofing inspector, so that they can send an adjuster to assess the damage.