You might not think of hail storms as being one of the most destructive forces of nature regarding your home and roof’s structural integrity, but the fact is that hail storms are one of the most common causes of roof damage.
A major hail storm – or even a minor one – can result in the need for significant roof repairs or perhaps a complete roof replacement.
Learn more about roof hail damage and hail damage roof insurance below.
What Causes Hail Storms
Hail storms are caused when hailstones form due to layers of precipitation bonding together inside a large rain cloud that is below freezing, resulting in an unstable air mass.
The hailstones themselves occur as the result of frozen water droplets being pulled back up into the storm cloud by strong winds or updrafts, growing into hailstones, and eventually falling to the ground and potentially damaging your roof or other property.
These large multi-layered balls or globules of ice tend to fall during thunderstorms or heavy rainstorms.
Hailstones fall when they become too heavy for the clouds to contain and gravity brings them down to the earth.
They can measure anywhere from 0.2 inches to 6 inches in diameter.
Hail storms in Illinois can cause a range of problems, from minor cosmetic marks to a major hail damage roof repair insurance claim or a total roof replacement.
How Can You Be Prepared for a Hail Storm?
While no one can possibly be prepared for everything, ensuring that your roof is in good shape with regular inspections and maintenance can go a long way towards ensuring that your roof will weather a hail storm or a wind damage roof.
You should also keep any trees or tall shrubbery around your home – especially any overhanging trees – carefully trimmed because any loose branches can fall on your roof during a hail storm, causing further damage.
What Should You Do After a Hail Storm?
After a hail storm, the first thing you should do is clear any debris from your roof (if you can) and the areas around it, checking for shingles on the ground, asphalt granules if that applies to your particular roof, fallen gutters, or anything else on the ground.
If you are not comfortable climbing up onto your roof, then call a roofing contractor or roofing company to help out (and be sure to get an estimate for your insurance company – this will be important if you make a hail damage roof insurance claim later).
You should also call a public adjuster – read on to learn more about what public adjusters are and what they can for you in the event of hail damage to your roof and any other natural disaster.
The Appearance of Hail Damage
The signs of hail damage to your roof or home include missing shingles, damaged or discolored shingles, damage or marks on the window sills and siding, dents or damage to air conditioners and other outside units, asphalt granules built up on the gutters and on the ground around your home, and gutters that are hanging, dented, or torn off completely.
Broken or cracked glass on the skylights, hail spatters on the driveway, damage to plants like shrubs, grass, or trees near the roof, dents or dings to any vehicles in your driveway or around the neighborhood, and perhaps even roofing company signs or flyers in the yards around your neighborhood.
Some long-term signs of roof damage from hail or other elements include algae or moss growth on the roof, roof leaks, sunlight coming inside through small holes in the roof that may not be visible from the outside, sagging, stains and discoloration, and an overly damp attic space.
These signs are particularly concerning if your roof is over 20 years old or more.
How to Inspect Your Roof for Hail Damage
You can start by checking the ground around your roof for missing shingles, asphalt granules (if applicable), or any other debris.
Next, if you can get up to the roof to visually inspect it, look for dents, missing shingles, and “bruises” or small dark spots on the shingles that may be indicative of a fundamental problem.
This may be when you would likely bring in a local roof company and public adjuster in order to get an estimate for your insurance company in order to make a roof hail damage insurance claim.
Keep in mind that it can be difficult to spot the damage on certain kinds of roofing, especially shingled roofs which will require a more detailed examination as opposed to metal or tiled roofing where you can easily spot cracks, dents, and dings.
The Effect of Hail Damage on Different Types of Roofing Systems
Hail storms affect various types of roofing materials in different ways.
For instance, metal roofing often gets dings and dents, while shingled or tiled roofs can get bruised, cracked, or have shingles knocked out of place by hailstones.
That said, roofs with multiple layers of shingles (e.g., when a new layer of shingles is placed over the existing one instead of tearing off the old roof and starting fresh) are more prone to hail damage since their support system tends to be softer and hold more weight.
How Hail Damage Affects Your Roof
When hailstones land on your roof, they affect the overall soundness and strength of the structure – think of it as your roof being pummeled by hundreds or thousands of tiny rocks, which can cause everything from cracked or scarred shingles to missing shingles to holes in the roof that let water and moisture into your attic and home in general.
Functional Versus Cosmetic Hail Damage
Sometimes, hail damage can be merely cosmetic – similar to a few dings or scrapes in the paint on an otherwise functional car.
However, even that sort of seemingly minor damage should be checked out by an Illinois roofing contractor in order to ensure that there are no underlying issues that could cause major problems in the future.
On the contrary, functional damage includes issues like actual holes and leaks – be aware that larger hailstones can actually punch holes in roofs made from softer materials like some kinds of shingles, or older roofs that may be weaker.
So, if the hail storm that occurred in your area had bigger hailstones falling, you definitely want to check the attic or spaces directly under the roof for leaks and consider calling a roofing inspector to check things out, even if you don’t see any immediate worries.
Contact us today for a free inspection from roof hail damage.
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The Costs of Fixing Hail Damage
Repairing a roof with hail damage can be quite expensive, particularly if the roof ends up needing to be replaced.
Of course, the costs vary depending on the type of roof you have, the materials necessary, and the extent of the destruction from the hail storm.
If the roof needs to be entirely replaced, you’re likely looking at somewhere between $5,000 to $20,000 or more depending on the size of your roof, your location, the type of materials used, and any special features like skylights, gables, cupolas, or any other architectural complexities that may make rebuilding your roof more involved.
On the other hand, if the roof just needs repairs, those tend to be around $400 to $700 plus per “square” or a 100 square foot section of the roof.
Of course, the actual estimate depends on the style of the roof, the materials used, and other factors such as your location and climate.
When Do You Need A Professional Roofing Contractor to Fix Hail Damage?
Not only can the repairs or even replacement to your roof be complicated and even dangerous if you aren’t experienced with roofing repair and construction, but you will also likely need estimates from a professional and to have a roofing contractor or company in order to have insurance approve your claim and pay for the work.
What’s more, a local roofer can more accurately assess the damage from the hail storm and may notice hitches or complications that a layperson wouldn’t necessarily catch.
And besides, isn’t the roof over your and your family’s heads worth the best roofing company you can source?
Find Out How We Can Help You With Your Insurance Claim
With years of experience and expert training, our public adjusting staff fight for you, making sure your insurance company pays for the damage to your property to be repaired the right way.
Will Insurance Cover Hail Damage?
Depending on your policy and the extent of the damage, your insurance may cover the repairs or even a replacement roof, but you will need the sign off on an estimate from a licensed roofing professional before your claim will be approved and paid out.
Furthermore, you will almost certainly want to engage the services of a public adjuster to help you navigate the process of filing a claim, getting estimates from roofing companies, and making sure that you, the policyholder, get the proper amount that you are owed from your insurance company.
Need help with a hail damage roofing claim?
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What Is A Public Adjuster and Why Would You Need One?
A public adjuster is your advocate when you are dealing with an insurance claim.
They are insurance experts who are independent of any company affiliation. Instead, they work with you, the policyholder, in order to ensure that you get a fair deal from the insurance company.
You should know that public adjusters work on contingency, so you won’t need to put any money down upfront.
Rather, they will take a percentage of the amount they recover for you from the insurance company, typically somewhere between 5% to 20%.
Filing an Insurance Claim for Hail Damage to Your Roof
If you suffered significant damage to your roof during a hail storm or other natural disaster, then you will likely need to file an insurance claim in order to cover or defray the costs of fixing the problems.
The process of filing an insurance claim can be complicated, especially if you are dealing with the stress of recovering from a major storm and dealing with significant damage to your home.
Midwestern Adjusters was My Last Hope
After almost a year of fighting with my insurance company Midwestern Adjusters was my last hope.
Midwestern Adjusters won the battle of what was obvious hail damage from almost a year ago.
They far exceeded my expectations and provided a superior customer service.
-Matt S Homeowner
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