Roof shingles can react differently when struck by hail as it depends on a number of factors, with the primary factor normally being, the type of material the roof is made of. However, speaking generally, there are some common, general and discernible signs you can normally find when looking for hail damage on roofs. These include; Granule loss; Dented gutters or Downspouts; Cracks in the shingles; Exposed, Roofing, Weakened self-seal strip on shingles; Bruising and Bubbles.
What is Hail Damage?
First, let’s define what hail damage is. It occurs when constant downpours of rock-like substances ‘ping’ off your roof, roofing components (vents, for example) and gutters. As many materials used, on roofing applications have the power to split off, into small or large chunks, there are many areas where you’d overlook cracking, denting even slight imperfections in gutter downspouts.
Moreover, some homeowners don’t inspect their roofs after such storms on the assumption that only hurricanes can cause significant damage which is in fact is a very poor judgement to make that in the end could end up costing you thousands of dollars in repairs.
Signs of Hail Damage
- Granules are the sandpaper-like part of the shingle. When a roof begins to, lose granules, the coating that comprises the asphalt starts to become exposed to the elements and as a result this leads to accelerated deterioration. Take a look in your gutters and downspouts after a hailstorm to see if any granules have come off your shingles.
Cracks in the shingles
- During heavy hailstorms, big hail or high winds can grip the shingles and cause cracks. This can cause exposure and tears, leaving your roof with bare spots. When shingled are compromised in this manner, roof leaks are a common result.
- Hail impact on a roof can shatter the shingles’ surfacing, causing it to interrupt faraway from the fiberglass mat underneath. Additionally, there are cases where the damage isn’t obvious and the fiberglass is only, fractured. In this case, it becomes slightly harder to detect and usually requires a trained eye. Fractured fiberglass mats may result in tears and cracks from some extent of hail impact.
Weakened self-seal strip
- Heavy winds and hail can weaken the seal strength of your shingles. A weakened seal is what causes a shingle to detach and may leave your roof exposed to the weather. Once a shingle is damaged, its integrity has been permanently compromised. This can lead to leaks, and it can cause other shingles around it to tear.
Once you know about these common forms of hail roof damage, you can at least begin to start to look for general and obvious signs of damage on your property after a hailstorm.
However, as mentioned at the beginning, it’s important to keep in mind that there are several factors that contribute to the level of impact hail can have on your roof.
These factors include; Size/Density, Materials, Barriers, and in the case of hailstorms; Wind Direction. However, the most varying results come as a result of the type of material used on the roof. For example, hail damage on asphalt shingles would look different to wood shingles.
What does Hail Damage on Different Roofing Materials Look Like?
Asphalt and Composition Shingles Hail Damage
- Random damage with no discernable pattern.
- Hail hits that are black in color.
- Loss of granules, which can expose the roof felt.
- Asphalt and/or mat that appears shiny.
- Hail hits that are soft to the touch, just like the bruise on an apple.
Wood Shingles Hail Damage
- Random damage with no discernable pattern.
- A split in the shingle that is brown/orange in color.
- A split in the shingle that has sharp corners and edges.
- A split in the shingle that has little to no deterioration at the edges.
- Impact marks or dents along the splits.
Types of Roof Damage That Can Be Mistaken For Hail Damage
Additionally, there are several other kinds of discernible roof damage that can be mistaken for hail damage. For example, exposure to inclement weather and sunlight makes shingles brittle and provides them an aged appearance.
This type of injury is normal wear and tear of shingles, which is usually, misidentified as hail damage. Other sorts of normal wear and tear may include blistering, cracking, granule loss, flaking and algae. Manufacturing defects and mechanical imperfections in shingles also can be mistaken for hail damage.
Learning how to identify hail damage on a roof, even before hail plagues your town, could help prevent roof fixing costs that could have been otherwise been avoided in advance.