How Damaging Is Hail To My Home?

hailLiving in a climate that is susceptible to tropical storms and hurricanes can put your patience to the test at the best of times. There is nothing worse than standing in your home listening to storms pass over while you wonder what kind of damage is currently happening to your home. Hail storms are common in Florida during January to March when the temperature and climate is changing. Hail forms when a thunderstorm updraft meets supercooled water droplets, which are water drops surrounded by below freezing air. When this happens it turns a thunderstorm into a hail storm. With hurricane season in full swing, protecting your home from hail damage in Jacksonville, FL is important.

AJ Wells roofing contractors have worked in the area for many years. We understand the unique weather systems that can arise in Jacksonville and can help build you a roof that can withstand these weather elements. Hailstones can cause major damage to your roof. Living in an area that receives hail often may mean that your roof will need to be replaced sooner than you think as each storm can wear down your roof quickly.

What can happen to my roof during a hailstorm?

The impact that a hailstorm can have on your roof will depend on what type of roof you have. While this damage may not show immediate signs of major issues to your roof, not inspecting and repairing your roof after a Jacksonville, FL hailstorm has occurred can lead to further damage.

  • Asphalt Shingle Roofing (Architectural Shingles and 3 Tab Shingles) – Your roofing consultant will explain just how dangerous the prolonged effects of hail damage can be to your home. On a shingle roof, hail removes granules which will expose the asphalt to ultraviolet (UV) sun rays leading to long term deterioration and asphalt migration. Damage to a homes shingles can show up in many ways.

    • Bruising: Bruising is more likely to occur from a Florida hail storm. While you may not notice leaking or damage from bruising as quickly as you would with cracks or breaks, this untreated issue can be very damaging to your roof over time. When the material has lost the granules designed for protection, your roof becomes exposed causing wear and tear to occur rapidly.

  • Metal Roofing – Metal roofing is a great choice for the Jacksonville area as it is quite often more resistant to storms and hail. You may find that your metal roof has imperfections after a hail storm. The good news is a metal roof has more of a chance of resisting major damage when it is impacted by hail. This does not mean you should not inspect your roof after a storm. Like all roofs, metal ages. As it ages, it can become less resistant. Seams on your roof may be dented which will cause destruction and leaks to occur.

  • Damage Based On The Size of Hail – The damage from a hailstone depends on the speed and height at which it catapults. If you hear that your neighborhood was hit with one of the following different sizes of hail, this is the kind of damage you can assume your roof has endured.

    • ½ inch (marble) – may cause damage but is not extremely concerning

    • ¾ inch (dime) – flashing and valleys may be impacted but can be more troubling for older roofs

    • 1 inch (quarter) – expect to see damage to your shingle roofing

    • 1 ½ inches (ping pong ball) or larger – can cause tremendous damage to all kinds of roofing

In the Jacksonville, Florida area there have been several hail storms with at least 1 inch hail stones. These locations include Fleming Island, Jacksonville Country Club and Northside.

How can I inspect my home’s roof for damage?

After a damaging hail storm you may wonder exactly what has happened to your roof. Look around your home and see if your porch screens, pool screens and coverings, cars, gutters, plastic window glazing and so on have been damaged. If they are, your roof probably acquired damages as well. Contact a licensed professional, such as a roofer or general contractor, to do a hail damage assessment. This is what they will be checking for:

  • Small indentations that will almost look like bruises. This is especially common on asphalt shingles when they have been impacted by storm damage.

  • Dents that have occurred on the vents, flashing and the gutters of your roof.

  • Small pieces of granules that may be seen in the gutters of your roof can be a sign of hail damage but can also be indicative of typical wear and tear.

Calling a professional to come and inspect your roof after a storm, is often the best way to find out if your roof has taken on significant damage or if the issues are just cosmetic.

How can I submit an insurance claim?

When it comes to filing a claim with your insurance company, you will want to get on top of it as soon as you notice any storm damage. Your insurance company may have restrictions on how many days you have to report the damage after a storm.

Here are the steps you can take when it comes to filing an insurance claim, in relation to damage to your home’s roof.

  • Write down details such as the date the storm occurred and what damage you have noticed from the storm.

  • Gather evidence such as photos of the damage and news reports on the storm.

  • Call a reputable roofing company and have a full inspection performed on your roof.

    • Your contractor will get on the roof and draw 10’ x 10’ squares with chalk to inspect the area for hail hits. This test will be done on each slope of the home and if there are 6-10 hits in each section, equal to 25% of the entire roof has been affected, you are much more likely to receive coverage. From there, an estimate can be made as to how much damage your roof has experienced.

  • At AJ Wells Roofing Contractors, we use the same software system, Xactimate, that the insurance companies use when estimating the cost of damage. Once we know your costs will be covered, we can compare the insurance company’s quote to the scope of work your roof needs with the help of Xactimate.

  • Contact your insurance company. You will want to directly contact the claims department if possible.

  • Your insurance company should then send out an insurance adjuster to inspect the damage. Have your licensed roofing contractor present when the adjuster comes to ensure that the inspector is noting all the damage and that you are getting the best outcome.

If you are concerned about your roofs ability to stand up to storms in the area, or you are concerned that your roof has hail damage, contact us today at AJ Wells Roofing Contractors. Hail damage is covered under most homeowner’s insurance policies. It’s a homeowner’s responsibility to pay their deductible and as of July 3, 2014, it’s a third degree felony not to pay. We are a family owned and operated business who takes pride in providing quality service at an affordable price. We can replace your roof, so that you can be sure that your home and family are protected. Call us today to schedule your free assessment and estimate.

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