Types of Roof Storm Damage
by Owens Corning
Hurricane-force winds, which are classified by meteorologists as 74 mph or greater, or gale-force winds, which are between 39-54 mph, can cause visible damage to your home’s roof. High winds can remove or tear shingles, leaving the underlayment, roof deck, or waterproofing material exposed to the elements.
During less severe storms, sudden, sharp gusts of wind can lift and curl shingles. When shingles are installed, they’re purposefully overlapped to create a water-tight seal, and this lifting and curling can break this seal, potentially leaving your roof vulnerable to damage from wind-driven rain.
While hailstorms tend to be relatively short, and rarely last for longer than 15 minutes, hailstones can leave dents or pockmarks in shingles and knock shingle granules loose. This can be problematic because these granules help protect your roof against rain and sun damage. Hail damage can also ruin the pleasing aesthetic appearance of your roof’s surface.
Roofs without proper drainage can experience problems with standing water after big rainstorms, especially in uneven areas. Clogged gutters can also cause backed up rainwater under your shingles, which allows moisture to potentially penetrate the underlayment or the roof deck.
Depending on how severe the storm was, debris can end up on the top of your roof, everything from small branches to larger tree limbs. Large objects can dent or impact the surface of the shingle, leaving that area of the roof vulnerable to moisture intrusion, whereas lighter branches may not be as much of a problem.
Schedule and Conduct a Roof Inspection
As always, safety is first. Contact a trusted, professional roofing contractor to schedule an inspection and help you with damage assessment.Many contractors offer free inspections and will know how to safely look for roof damage.
Roof: Visually assess your roof by walking around the perimeter of your house and taking note of any visible storm damage.
You might also have a good view of parts of your roof from one of your windows. Keep a list of notes and/or take pictures — this can potentially be helpful later for insurance purposes. Any visible signs of storm damage should be documented, such as dented, torn, curled, or missing shingles.
Gutters, Vents, and Windows: Check for dents on your home’s gutters and roofing accessories, such as gable vents and other overhangs. Windows should be inspected for cracks, broken glass, loose weather-stripping, and torn screens.
Outside Areas: Walk around your home’s exterior and look for fallen tree limbs, missing fence posts, or damage to lawn furniture and other decorations. Flat surfaces, such as patios and decks, can be checked for hail damage.
Attic and Ceilings: Observe these areas for leaks and water spots. While your home’s roof might appear undamaged on the exterior, wind and hail can cause unseen leaks that may lead to bigger problems later. Ceilings, light fixtures, and your attic should all be inspected for water leaks and spots. Use a flashlight to see in dark areas.
Hire a Dependable, Trusted Roofing Contractor
It’s important to work with a contractor you can trust. Work with a roofer who is licensed, insured, and experienced. Since 1982, Tosca has weathered many storms in our community and will be here long after. Our expert insurance advisors can help walk you through the entire process.