Hailstorms are a homeowner’s biggest nightmare—they can cause damage to your landscaping, windows, siding, and, worst of all, your roofing system.
Minneapolis and St. Paul are frequent targets of hailstorms. As a Twin Cities homeowner, you need to know how to spot hail damage on your roofing system, so you can act quickly to restore your roof to its safe, durable, beautiful state.
Common Signs of Hail Damage
Sometimes, hail damage is more difficult to spot than you might think. Look for the following signs of hail damage after a storm, and when in doubt, contact a professional to evaluate the state of your roofing system.
1. Shingle Granule Loss
Shingle granules are one of the three elements of asphalt roofing shingles. They are the tiny ceramic bulbs that cover (and protect) the fiberglass mat and asphalt coating. When hailstones strike your roofing system, these granules can fall off and expose the asphalt coating to the elements, which may cause your roofing system to age more quickly.
You can identify shingle granule loss by looking in your gutters or around the lawn surrounding your home—this is typically where the granules will accumulate.
2. Cracked Shingles
Depending on the hailstones’ size, speed, and shape, one or more roofing shingles may crack when they collide with your roof. When shingles crack, they expose the decking underneath to the elements, which may result in moisture damage or attic leaks.
3. Broken Shingles
In even worse scenarios, large hailstones hitting your roof at a high velocity can completely break off portions of your shingles, leaving your decking vulnerable to further storm damage or moisture penetration.
Typically, if you have lost a piece of a shingle, you will be able to notice the bare spot from your vantage point on the ground. You may even find the stray piece in your gutters, on your lawn, or sitting on your roofing system if it did not blow away in the storm.
4. Shingle Bruising
Though hailstones can crack and break your roofing shingles, they are much more likely to leave bruises. Shingle bruises are dents, marks, or dings on your roofing shingles in the places where hailstones hit them. They are often a different color than the rest of your roofing system, just like a bruise would be on your skin.
Shingle bruising can be challenging to spot, but it is often accompanied by granule loss. Although shingle bruising is not always harmful, the minor dents in your shingles can sometimes lead to more significant issues down the road, like water damage and attic leaks.
If you notice any bruising on your roofing shingles after a hailstorm, it is best to call a professional contractor so that they can evaluate the severity of the damage.
5. Roof Penetration
Your roofing shingles are not the only element of your roofing system that can experience damage during hailstorms. Vents, gutters, flashing, and metal elements of your roofing system can also be impacted. When these items are slightly dented, it will not inhibit their performance, but it may be a sign your roofing shingles are experiencing unseen hail damage.
Regardless, you should contact a professional contractor to ensure your vents, gutters, and flashing are in good working order. If not, this can cause severe issues for your home, like moisture damage and high utility bills.
Does the Size of Hail Make a Difference?
Hailstones can vary in shape and size, so it is essential to understand which sizes of hailstones can cause significant damage to your roof.
- 1″ hail—Hailstones smaller than one inch are unlikely to damage your roof, but once they reach this size, they may begin to bruise your shingles or cause granule loss.
- 1.25″ hail—Hailstones of this size may cause bruising or shingle granule loss and can also cause damage to your siding.
- 1.5″ hail—At this point, walnut-sized hailstones can cause severe damage to your shingles, like cracking, especially when accompanied by high wind speeds.
- 1.75″ hail—Hailstones this size or larger can cause severe damage to your roofing system, like breaking shingles and exposing your roof decking to moisture penetration.
Remember, hail size is not the only element that matters. Wind velocity and hailstone shape play just as critical of a role in the extent of damage hail storms will cause to your roofing system.
My Roof Has Hail Damage—Now What?
Hail damage should never be ignored—even if you only spot minor cosmetic damage to your asphalt roofing shingles. It is always wise to get a professional opinion from a roofing contractor about the state of your roofing system after a hailstorm. They may also be able to identify roofing damage that is difficult for you to spot from your vantage point on the ground.
If your roofing contractor does not spot any significant damage—that is great! You are in the clear. However, you may need a roof replacement if your shingles are cracked, broken, or bruised.
Fortunately, your homeowner’s insurance should always cover hail damage and roof damage caused by extreme weather. An experienced contractor can help you navigate the steps to correctly file an insurance claim to ensure you receive your payout.
Transform Your Roofing System with a New Look after Hail Damage with Beissel Window & Siding
It can be tricky to identify hail damage to your roofing system. That is why contacting an expert contractor with a trained eye, like Beissel Window & Siding, is the best decision you can make after a storm.
We know you hate jumping through hoops to get an answer—especially when you are nervous about the state of your roofing system. We value your time, so we personally answer your call instead of sending you to a call center to get to the root of the problem quickly.
Learn more about our roofing services to discover how we can restore your home to a beautiful, durable state after hail damage with stylish, long-lasting asphalt roofing shingles.