Hailstorms may be short-lived but they can cause major hail damage on roofs. In the US, about 3,000 hail storms occur every year, and those hailstorms cause about $1 billion in damages each year. What is the best way to prepare before roof hail damage? Here are some tips that will save you money and help you feel confident before the arrival of hail season.
Before a Hailstorm
The first way to prepare for roof hail damage is to know and understand what your insurance covers and how much your deductible will be. A typical homeowner’s insurance policy covers some or all of the cost to repair or replace hail damage on roof and other hail damage to windows and decks. You may have a higher deductible for wind and hail damage to roof than for other types of insurance policies. You can also get a specific roof hail damage policy that offers more extensive coverage for the cost of roof repairs.
A few more points about insurance. Make sure you get a policy with RCV (replacement cost value). You also want to have a code endorsement on your policy, which pays for all required codes based on your municipality and current code standards. Code upgrades on your policy are an inexpensive addition that can save thousands of dollars if you get hit by a hailstorm. Talk to your insurance agent to understand your coverage.
Trim shrubs and bushes around your house, especially those shrubs that sit next to a window. Even though shrubs and bushes are unlikely to come out of the ground during a hailstorm, the branches can hit and crack the window. Proper trimming is healthy for the shrub and it’s also essential to prevent window damage from wind and hail.
Remove leaves, pine needles, and other debris from your gutters and drain pipes. You want to make sure that rain water can drain quickly away from your roof and onto the ground. When the hail melts, it can cause water damage if it doesn’t have proper drainage.
If your home is surrounded by a fence, make sure that each fence post is tightly secured which will prevent the post from being lifted up and thrown against the house by a heavy wind.
Reducing Hail Damage to Roof
The second way to prepare for roof hail damage is to inspect your roof. A roof inspection is an excellent way to make sure there is no pre-existing roof hail damage and to confirm there are no missing, worn or curled up shingles. Even small dents in the roof shingles can lead to big problems in the future. Repairing your roof today will avoid an extensive repair and cleanup after a hailstorm. Fixing roof hail damage is less expensive than replacing a roof after a storm.
If your roof is aging, get a roof inspection before the start of hail season to find out if you need a total roof replacement. A new roof will withstand a hailstorm much better than an old roof. Consider a class 3 or class 4 roof replacement which is proven to withstand heavy hail. Class 3 and class 4 roofing materials are highly impact resistant and a worthy investment to protect your home from roof hail damage.
During a Hailstorm
When a hailstorm hits, follow these basic emergency safety steps:
- 1. Stay indoors
- 2. Stay away from windows and skylights
- 3. Bring your pets inside
- 4. Tightly close windows and doors
- 5. Close window coverings such as drapes or blinds to prevent debris and broken glass from blowing in if the window is broken
- 6. If a severe storm is predicted, park your car in the garage or carport and bring in patio furniture, lawn chairs and plants
After a Hailstorm
If you have roof hail damage from a hailstorm, report it to your insurance agent as soon as possible. You need to get a hail damage roof inspection right away. Stay tuned for our next blog post with advice on what to do after a hailstorm hits. Contact Peak to Peak Roofing with any questions.