Inspecting For Roof Damage After A Storm

Springtime in Central Florida means rain and storms, wreaking havoc on your home’s roof and causing storm damage. It is important to diagnose any roof damage as soon as possible to address and fix any damage before it becomes a more costly leak.

Inspect your roof regularly: If you inspect the roof regularly you then can have information to compare with the condition of the roof after a severe storm. This way you can document when damage occurred and can establish that damage was or was not present before a particular storm. This is helpful when filling insurance claims.

Photographs help: Take photographs of the roof in its un-damaged or normal wear state. Having “before the hail storm” and “after the hail storm” photos can completely put to bed any debate about whether or not hail damaged a roof.

Inspect your roof promptly after a storm: Any storm or wind alone can damage a roof, so the sooner you inspect the roof after a storm the better you can avoid leak damage inside the home, and if an insurance claim for roof damage is warranted, the better will be the data you can provide in support of your claim.  If you aren’t sure what to look for call a roofing professional to check it out for you.  This is safer and they know what to look for.

Inspect your roof gutters: before and after a storm. If the gutters were clean and after the storm they are loaded with mineral granules you have strong evidence of roof wear and damage due to the hail storm.

Hail Damage – What is it and how do you spot it?

Insurance Adjuster marked hail damage on an insureds roof.

Is damage immediately noticeable? Not always. Hail impact may cause latent damage that can, over time, result in premature aging of the shingles. Without obvious visual damage, there is no real way to be sure how much, if any, damage shingles have encountered. Latent damage caused by hail or severe weather may not be apparent until months or years later and may cause the shingles to age prematurely.

How can I tell if the roof was damaged?

Generally, damage can be seen as indentations and/or fractures on the shingle’s surface. Hailstones vary in size, shape, and hardness and can create a random pattern of dents or depressions. If this is not evident, look for indentations on metal flashings, siding, chimney caps, or even skylight flashings. After some time, clusters of granules may come off (at the point of impact) in a random pattern and expose the asphalt.  If you are unsure or not comfortable climbing up on your roof, it is always a good idea to call a roofing expert to check it out for you.  They are trained and know what to look for.

What are the most common types of damage?

  • Granule loss at points of impact, which may be accompanied by surface depression. Loss of mineral granules as an immediate or gradual consequence of storm damage can lead to the asphalt coating being directly exposed to the elements. This may lead to accelerated aging of the shingle. Therefore, granule loss is NOT just cosmetic damage, and “sugaring” — the process of adding loose granules to damaged shingles with asphalt cement — is not a permanent solution.
  • Cracks in the granule-asphalt surfacing, which may radiate outward from points of impact. Cracks may be present especially if high winds blew the shingles back.
  • Exposed fiberglass mat, where hail shattered the granule-asphalt surfacing causing it to break away from the fiberglass mat.
  • Fractured fiberglass mat, which may or may not be immediately visible. A fractured mat may result in tears radiating out from the points of impact. Furthermore, hidden damage to the mat may later develop into cracks and tears in time as the shingles age.
  • Loosening of the self-seal strip. This damage may or may not be immediately visible and may weaken the seal integrity, creating the possibility of future shingle blow-off.

Can several individual shingles be replaced or should the entire roof be replaced?

While it is possible to replace individual storm-damaged shingles, latent damage to the surrounding shingles caused by a storm can be difficult to assess. Because of the potential for the surrounding shingles to also have experienced storm damage, complete roof replacement is sometimes recommended for the long-term performance of these roofs. If the damage is confined to one plane of the roof, replacement of just the damaged roof plane may be possible. If individual shingles are being replaced, any nails that were removed from surrounding shingles must be replaced and the surrounding shingles must be resealed by hand for the best results.

It is always best to have an expert diagnose your roof after any major storm, especially if the storm produced hail or strong wind. Call the professionals at Total Home Roofing for a Free Assessment of your roof.

 

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About Total Home Roofing: Total Home Roofing Central Florida’s #1 Residential and Commercial roofing company.  Based in Rockledge, FL, founded in 2006, Total Home roofing has over 150 employees and 3 Central Florida offices available to serve you.

Serving Orlando, Winter Park, Winter Garden, Maitland, Apopka, Edgewood, Ocoee, Belle Isle, Bay Lake (part of Walt Disney World), Lake Buena Vista (part of Walt Disney World), Eatonville, Oakland, Windermere, Cocoa Beach, Merritt Island, Vero Beach, Melbourne, Viera, Dewater, Titusville, Sanford, Daytona Beach, Port Orange, New Smyrna Beach, Ormond Beach, Kissimmee, Winter Haven, Ocala, Altamonte Springs, Longwood, Deltona, Oviedo, Deland, St. Cloud, Cape Canaveral, Ponce Inlet, Melbourne Beach, and the surrounding areas.

Locations: Brevard County FL, Orange and Seminole Counties FL, Volusia County FL.