The roof of your home is the first line of protection against the outdoor elements such as rain, snow and hailstones. This is why the integrity of the roof is of critical importance and any needed roofing repairs must be performed in a timely manner.
Hailstones in particular are of concern to most homeowners because of the sheer degree of damage that they can cause. Hailstorms typically involve sizable hailstones pelted at rooftops and other exposed surfaces at fairly high speeds. This can result in visible dents as well as other types of damage to the roof.
Every year, homeowners across the U.S. suffer nearly a billion dollar in hail damage. The damage becomes even worse if you don’t take timely measures to remedy the damage after the storm. To save you from a costly mistake like this, here are some must-do steps you should undertake following a hailstorm.
Inspect the Roof
Hailstorms can vary wildly in their severity. Some involve a rain of huge stones that wreck havoc on any surface they crash into. Others involve relatively small hailstones that can cause minor dents at their worst. A quick and easy way to gauge the actual impact of a hailstorm is to inspect your roof. The outlook of the roof after the storm as well as the leftover debris will give you a clear idea of the nature of damage.
When inspecting the roof for damage, look for dents and damage to the gutters, downspouts, flashing as well as the actual roofing material such as the shingles. It is this damage to the shingles that should really worry you, although damaged gutters or flashing can also create roof problems. When you file an insurance claim, it is damage to shingles that will actually make your claim worth it. So if you have sustained damage to the shingles, it is vitally important to identify it.
Other sections of the roof you should inspect include skylights, chimneys, vents as well as any other features you have on the roof.
Assess the Damage
As with any insurance claim, you must be able to demonstrate your actual loss. For that, you will need to assess the damage your roof has sustained under the hailstorm. To be sure, make sure you mark out every area of damage on the shingles with a chalk. Damage on other areas like chimneys and skylights is easier to spot.
Contact Your Insurer
The good news is that in most cases, actual damage caused by a hailstorm is covered by the insurance company. This helps you get your roof back in shape after it sustains damage in the storm. Many insurance companies require that your roof must have a certain degree of damage in order for your claim to be valid. In most cases, this means having 8 or more hailstone hits with a 10ft x 10ft square area on the roof.
Insurers also make a distinction between functional and cosmetic damage. Functional damage is when the integrity and longevity of your roof is affected. Cosmetic damage is more superficial and may only impact the looks of the roof. Typically, insurance companies do not cover cosmetic damage but are obliged to pay up for functional damage to the roof.
When filing with your insurer, make sure you list the damage in detail. When an insurance agent arrives for inspection, be sure to identify the damaged sections of the roof.
Perform Roof Repairs
The final step is to have the actual repairs performed on your roof. Once you have followed the steps listed above, this shouldn’t be a problem. The right roofing contractor will help you make the right decision during the process of repairs. This includes choosing the right materials, choosing between roof repairs and replacements, and ensuring that quality work is done.
A good contractor will also help you assess the work done by rechecking the integrity of the roof and its components following a repair job.
Hiring a Reliable Roofing Contractor in Atlanta, Georgia
When undertaking roof inspection or damage assessment, it is usually a good idea to hire the services of a reliable roofing contractor. As discussed above, a good contractor will help you in many ways during the roof repair process.
Here at Sentinel Exteriors, we offer a comprehensive range of roofing services. Our experts can handle repair and replacement of all types of roofs. We also provide upfront estimates of our services so that you have a fair idea of the costs involved. In addition, we help you get your claim filed and approved at the earliest. Call us today for free quotes and service bookings.