Fort Worth Roofing: Article About Detecting Hail Damage
According to the Federal Alliance of Safe Homes, hail causes over $1.6 billion in roof damage per year in the United States. Hailstones can be up to 3 inches wide and fall faster than 100 miles per hour. When a storm brings large hail, the damage is obvious. People often find broken windows and shingles with holes. Damage from hail that's less than half an inch wide is usually more subtle, but it can be just as harmful if it's not repaired promptly. When even minor damage stays exposed to the elements, it can turn into leaks, rot, mold and mildew. A trusted Fort Worth roofing professional can inspect homes and businesses for damage after a hailstorm and make repairs if needed. Homeowners can also perform a quick inspection on their own. Here are some of the most common signs of hail damage.
Soft woods and metals are most likely to be damaged by hail. Gutters and downspouts may have dents or dings. Wood or aluminum siding could also be dented by hail that was blown in from an angle, and wood shakes often split. Metal flashing and roof vents are vulnerable to denting as well, and plastic vent covers could become cracked. The size of the dents can show residents the size of the hail and the potential damage to other areas.
The roofing contractors at Total Roofing of Fort Worth can answer questions about emergency repairs or roof maintenance.
If the gutters have hail damage, the shingles were probably damaged as well. The major signs are bruising, cracking and missing asphalt granules. Denting or bruising from hail sometimes leaves curved marks or dark spots on asphalt, but it isn't always completely visible. Homeowners can check for bruising by climbing a ladder and feeling nearby shingles for dimples or dents. It's important to avoid stepping on the roof. If a dent becomes softer than the rest of the shingle, it means the shingle has already started to deteriorate. Parts of cracked shingles may be missing, and chips on the bottom edges of shingles are common.
Shingles that have areas with exposed black roof underlayment have probably had some of their granules knocked off. People may also notice asphalt granules in gutters and downspouts. This is a common sign of wear on older roofs, even without a hailstorm. These granules add more strength, UV protection and puncture resistance to shingles. Without them, an average shingle can only last for about five years. This means that hail damage that's not repaired can dramatically reduce the lifespan of a roof.