Here in Tornado Alley, residents of Missouri have experienced approximately five tornadoes each month for the past two decades, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Even in non-catastrophic storms, Mother Nature can deliver a massive blow to your roof. Severe hail, wind, and rain can call for extensive roof repairs and require you to replace your roof sooner than anticipated.
Are you prepared for the next storm? Your choice of roofing materials makes a significant difference since they vary in how well they withstand wind, rain, and hail. For example, a tile roof may be more vulnerable to a hail storm than a shingle roof. In contrast, wind can get under an asphalt shingle and tear it away in a split second.
Even if you can’t see any signs of roof storm damage, wind and hail may have infiltrated your roof’s surface in ways you can’t detect. Therefore, after every significant storm, you should call a licensed roofing contractor to inspect for damage. Read on to learn how to spot obvious storm damage in the most common types of Southwest Missouri roofs.
Here in Springfield, make Ohm Restoration your go-to contractor for a thorough roof inspection. Our team will always go the extra mile to secure your roof, whether that means repairing one shingle or replacing your entire roof. We’re pleased to be able to help both homeowners and business owners who have roofing needs. Please call us at 888-319-7058.
Hail consists of hard-packed ice that can reach the size of a golf ball. This precipitation can damage all but the toughest roofing materials such as steel or rubber. Hail damage to your roof typically requires numerous structural repairs.
On an asphalt shingle roof, hail can loosen the granules that form the roof’s outermost layer. These granules act as a buffer, so damage to them threatens the integrity of your roof. Dark spots on the roof usually indicate where granules have torn away.
Besides shielding your roof, shingle granules also block UV rays from the sun. As a result, harmful UV radiation can seep into your building after hail damages your shingles. Though granules naturally deteriorate over time, a hail storm can accelerate granule loss.
Large hail can visibly pockmark or dent tile or metal roofs. Moreover, even pebble-sized hailstones can flake away any roof type’s surface. This seemingly minor damage can promote water leakage and destabilize your roof over time.
Lastly, the hail on your roof might melt all at once, creating standing water. This melting is particularly hard on shingle roofs since shingles absorb more moisture. Furthermore, since tiles are heavy roofing materials, standing water may add dangerous weight to a tile roof.
Overall, all roof types display different signs of hail damage. To identify these signs, inspect for:
- Dents or scratches if you have a metal roof
- Cracked or broken tiles if you have a tile roof
- Loose granules in the roof, gutters, and downspouts if you have a shingle roof
- Trauma to roof structures such as gutters, skylights, vents, and downspouts
- Cracks in windows or the siding
An asphalt shingle roof is more vulnerable to high wind damage than most other roof types. For instance, bracing winds can get under the shingles and dislodge them. Strong winds can also rip out individual asphalt shingles while eroding the protective granules.
Nonetheless, wind causes similar effects across roof types. High winds can warp and fracture gutters and other roof structures. Furthermore, falling debris can strike any type of roof. High winds can fling around debris such as tree branches that end up colliding with your roof.
To spot wind-related roof storm damage, look for these signs:
- Peeling or curling shingles if you have an asphalt shingle roof
- Granule loss if you have an asphalt shingle roof
- Shattered or cracked tiles if you have a tile roof
- Debris such as tree branches atop the roof or inside the gutters
- A bent, cracked, or collapsing chimney
- Shingles or other roof materials on the ground near your building
Even one peeling shingle can progress to large-scale roof damage if you leave it unrepaired. For instance, wind can create gaps under shingles, exposing the underlying decking and other layers. When damage occurs to these materials, widespread roof damage grows likelier.
Heavy Rain Damage
Heavy rain may not cause as much structural roof damage as wind or other storms. However, heavy rain is just as hazardous since high volumes of it will weigh down your roof, leaking water into your home. In worst-case scenarios, the water’s weight can cause sections of your roof to collapse.
Heavy rain can also leave standing water on your roof. This standing water encourages mold, mildew, or algae growth if you do not quickly remove it. Mold is not only unsightly but also eats away at a roof over time. Of course, it can also cause serious respiratory problems for your building inhabitants (including pets).
To spot water damage on a metal roof, you may notice areas of rust or discoloration. Other signs of water damage include standing water, sponge-like decking, or puddles on your roof. You should also examine your attic, upstairs ceilings, and upstairs light fixtures for damp patches that indicate water leakage.
Tornados can decimate a building within seconds, stripping it to its very foundation. Though asphalt shingles tend to be more affected by strong winds, a tornado leaves all roof types at risk. Tornado-strength winds are especially destructive if you’re in a tornado’s direct path.
Nonetheless, being outside a tornado’s path may not leave your roof unscathed. A tornado’s winds can stir up much larger debris than average high winds, uprooting entire trees or displacing vehicles. So after a tornado, check your roof for peeling shingles, water leaks, fallen tree limbs and branches, and other debris.
Lastly, remember that removing the tornado’s debris does not mean your roof hasn’t suffered damage. Keep in mind that debris may have punctured your roof or caused other unseen trauma that may spread over time.
A hurricane has similar high wind speeds to a tornado, often exceeding 74 miles per hour. However, hurricanes are more likely to cause heavy downpours.
Moreover, like tornados, hurricanes may come with hail and lightning strikes. If lightning hits your roof, it will probably not cause a fire. However, the strike may poke a hole in your roof, resulting in water leakage, especially in an asphalt shingle roof.
Filing Insurance Claims for Storm Damage
Your exact coverage for roof damage depends on your homeowners insurance policy. Almost all HO-3 home insurance policies cover wind damage as one of the 16 home insurance perils, which include (among others):
- Windstorm damage
- Hail damage
- Damage from the weight of ice, snow, or sleet
- Damage from falling objects
- Lightning damage
- Frozen pipes
You should be protected whether the wind tears shingles off your roof, breaks windows, or knocks a tree onto your house.
Whatever your coverage, you must act quickly to file a claim get due compensation. Take these steps immediately after the damage occurs:
- Protect yourself. Vacate your home or business if you feel your roof’s safety is compromised.
- Gather proof of the roof damage. Take photographs of the damage before you remove it. If you clear the damage before taking this step, insurance companies may cite a lack of proof that the damage occurred and won’t reimburse you. You can also use documentation from a roof inspector as proof of the damage.
- Get an inspection. A roofing contractor thoroughly inspects your roof and recommends the roof repairs or replacements you need. Call a contractor right away after you take the photos you need for your claim.
- Remove standing water. Use a broom to sweep away any residual water on your roof. After sweeping, use a mop to soak up the remaining water.
- Remove debris from the roof. Remove any branches, twigs, or leaves lying on your roof, make sure to practice safety here, and if you need help it’s recommended you consult a professional.
- Secure your roof. Place a heavy-duty tarp over your roof. A tarp cover shields your roof until you get it repaired. However, if you have water damage, first hire a water restorer to drain the affected area, then position the tarp.
- Restore your gutters. Drain your gutters of excess water and remove any debris.
- Check the attic. If you have water damage, check your attic for leaks. If you see leaks, position buckets or other water barriers beneath the leaks as a stopgap. You should also check other upstairs rooms for leaks, including closets or nooks.
- Gather witnesses to the damage. Ask your neighbors if they can attest to seeing your roof damage. Gathering witnesses means people can back you up when you speak to an insurance claims adjuster. Remember, you need all the evidence you can get for your claim.
How Our Roofing Contractor Can Help You with Roof Storm Damage
Be sure to call our professional roofing contractor at Ohm Restoration in Springfield, MO, to inspect and restore your roof before you take those actions yourself. Having our contractor perform this work will guarantee your safety, given the many dangers of working on a roof. We also know how to search for the underlying damage that isn’t visible to the naked eye.
Moreover, at Ohm Restoration, we offer insurance claims assistance. We can help you file your claim, meet with an insurance claims adjuster, and communicate with your insurance provider. Overall, hiring us as your roofing contractor greatly increases your chances of getting a fair insurance settlement.
Call Ohm Restoration, a High-Quality Roof Contractor and Insurance Restoration Expert. in Springfield, MO, Today
Do you have storm roof damage and feel unsure about what to do next? Contact our trustworthy team at Ohm Restoration in Springfield, MO. Besides restoring roofs, we also help clients file an insurance claim for roof damage and get the settlement they deserve.
Call us at Ohm Restoration at 888-319-7058 for a free consultation. We will get your roof in shipshape condition!