Understanding Hail Damage to Roofs: Types of Hail and How to Protect Your Home

Hailstorms can be a homeowner’s worst nightmare. While some hailstorms may yield comparatively small and innocuous hailstones, others possess the capacity to cause substantial harm to your property, with your roof being particularly vulnerable. It is paramount to comprehend the diverse range of hail types that can endanger your roof and to be thoroughly prepared for these meteorological occurrences. This preparedness is vital in protecting your home and mitigating the expenses associated with potential repairs. In this blog post, we will delve into the types of hail that can harm your roof and provide valuable tips on how to prepare yourself for impending hailstorms.

Factors of Hail that Cause Damage

Hail Size:

The size of hailstones is a pivotal element in determining their capacity to inflict damage upon your roof. Hailstones with smaller dimensions, often measuring less than one inch in diameter, tend to have a reduced likelihood of causing significant harm. Conversely, when hailstones reach a size of one inch or larger, they introduce a substantial risk to the overall structural soundness of your roof.

Hailstones the size of golf balls, measuring approximately 1.75 inches in diameter or more, possess the potential to cause severe and extensive damage. This includes the possibility of roof punctures and fractures in your shingles, highlighting the gravity of the threat posed by larger hailstones.

Hail Density:

Hailstones with greater density can inflict more damage. Denser hailstones hit with more force, increasing the likelihood of causing damage to your roofing materials.

Soft, spongy hail is less likely to cause damage compared to hard, dense hailstones.

Hail Velocity:

The speed at which hail falls can impact the extent of roof damage. Hailstones falling at high velocities have a better chance of causing significant damage.

When hail is accompanied by strong winds, it can be even more destructive, as it hits your roof with increased force.

Preparing for Hailstorms

Regular Roof Inspection:

Perform regular roof inspections to identify pre-existing damage or weak spots. This allows you to address any issues before a hailstorm hits, minimizing the potential for further damage. Reach out to local contractors to see if they offer free inspections.

Roof Material Selection:

If you’re building or replacing your roof, consider hail-resistant roofing materials such as impact-resistant shingles or metal roofing. These materials are designed to withstand hail better than traditional asphalt shingles.

Trim Overhanging Trees:

Trim branches that overhang your roof to reduce the risk of falling limbs and hail damage. This also helps prevent debris from clogging your gutters and drains.

Reinforce Roof and Attic:

Consider reinforcing your roof and attic with additional bracing or supports, especially if you live in an area prone to severe hailstorms. Consult a roofing professional for advice on strengthening your roof’s structure.

Install Hail Guards:

Hail guards or screens can be installed over vulnerable areas of your roof, such as skylights or roof vents, to protect them from hail damage.

Secure Outdoor Items:

Before a hailstorm, secure outdoor furniture, garden tools, and other items that could become projectiles during high winds.

Review Insurance Coverage:

Ensure that your homeowner’s insurance policy covers hail damage. Familiarize yourself with the claims process so that you’re prepared to act quickly if damage occurs.

Gaining insight into the varieties of hail that pose a threat to your roof and proactively preparing for hailstorms can yield significant long-term benefits. It can save you valuable time, reduce expenses, and alleviate the stress associated with potential damages. By making investments in hail-resistant roofing materials, conducting routine roof inspections, and implementing preventative measures, you can enhance the safeguarding of your home against the formidable impact of hail. Remember that preparation is key to minimizing damage and ensuring your family’s safety during hailstorms.