Inspecting Your Roof After a Storm
While your roof and other aspects of your home are designed to withstand severe weather, sometimes a storm can be damaging enough to cause an issue. After every strong storm, you should contact a professional to have your roof and home exterior inspected for damage. While some storm damage like dented siding is obvious, only a trained eye can see the smallest issues that can lead to more severe damage in the long run.
In this blog, we’ll discuss:
● Common signs of storm damage and why they need to be repaired.
● Steps you should take to secure your home after a severe weather event.
● The value of a professional roof inspection.
Common Signs of Storm Damage
PLEASE READ: If you’re not a roofing contractor, you should not get on your roof to check for storm damage. Instead, you should go about your yard and check sections of your home where you cannot be harmed.
1. Gutter Debris – One of the most telling signs of damage to your roof is debris coming through your downspouts and gutters. Your gutter and downspout system is responsible for getting water and debris off of your roof so it does not cause damage.
If you have shingles, they are more likely to be chipped and damaged by severe weather events like hail and ice storms. If there are shingle granules coming out of your downspouts or granules caked inside the gutters and downspouts, there is damage of some degree to your roof.
Missing granules expose the underside of the shingles to the elements, which increases the likelihood that they can give in to the water and cause water damage in your home.
2. Yard Debris – You should also check the yard around your home for debris, which can be a sign of potential roof damage. If it hailed, there may be branches, shingles, granules, or other roofing materials outside of your home. If you see shingles strewn throughout your yard, your roof is at high risk for potential leaks.
3. Leaks – Perhaps the most obvious sign of storm damage to your roof is water leaking into your home from your ceiling or walls. If you do not get your roof checked after a storm or you check it on your own as an inexperienced roofer, you will likely miss some sort of damage, whether it is obvious or slight. If this is the case and there’s damage to some part of your roof, water could begin leaking through your ceiling and walls from that storm and every storm that comes after it.
If you do not get your roof inspected after a severe storm, you are putting yourself at risk for significant roof repairs. If water leaks into your home and is unnoticed for some time, it can cause health risks, such as mold growth. If you get your roof checked immediately after a storm, get a repair quote, and file a claim with your insurance, you can save your family from health risks and potentially save money if your insurance company accepts your claim.
4. Higher Energy Bills – One of the less obvious signs of roof damage is a spike in your energy bills in the weeks and months following a storm. If you didn’t get your roof inspected, there could be undiagnosed damage that leaves your home exposed. Outside elements could enter your home, which can cause your HVAC system to work harder to maintain the temperature set on the thermostat. If that is the case, your energy bills will increase. If you notice this over an extended period of time, you should hire a licensed professional to come to investigate your roof.
What to Do When Strong Weather Strikes Your Home
Regular roof maintenance is the key to ensuring your roof lasts for many years. If you take care of minor roofing damage as it arises, your roof will function at peak performance and last for many years. However, even a well-maintained roof can become damaged when wicked weather strikes. If you suspect damage from heavy rains, damaging winds, or hail, don’t ignore it. By addressing any potential problems immediately and communicating with your insurance company right away, you can minimize the impact on your pocketbook.
The key to recovering after storm damage is to have a reliable roofer on call and a good storm damage plan in place for addressing any damage that occurs. Follow this advice to get your roof back on track fast and prevent further problems:
1. Call your roofer right away.
Before you do anything else, contact your roofing repair contractor. It’s a good idea to keep a list of your contractors on file in your list of emergency contacts next to your insurance company. In the frenzy after a big storm, one of the biggest mistakes homeowners make is contacting the first contractor they can find. This can lead to inadequate repairs or hiring someone without the appropriate level of experience for the job. Knowing you’ve got a roofing contractor you can trust from the first moment after a storm gives you a plan and the security of knowing you’ve got someone trustworthy on your side.
2. Grab your camera or phone.
Even if your roofing repair team comes right away, a lot can change in a short period of time when there’s a rolling stormfront passing by. Having clear images immediately after a storm blows through can help you with the insurance claim process. Keep your phone or camera on hand to capture any images that demonstrate a potential insurance claim.
Make sure to back your images up online in your personal drive or on a flash drive. This will also keep an automatic record of the date so there’s no discrepancy as to when the damage occurred when you’re connecting with the insurance company.
3. Survey the damage.
Once it’s safe enough to do so, take a walk around your property and get a good look at your roof. Be wary of any branches or debris that could fall and injure you, and avoid climbing or placing yourself in harm’s way. Your goal is to observe obvious damage that can be seen from the ground. This includes shingles that are spread across the ground or missing from your roof.
You’ll also want to get a record of any debris that’s laying on your roof as it could move when more strong winds kick up. Never get on top of your roof without the proper safety equipment. That’s a job that’s best left to a professional roofing company.
4. Get a professional storm damage inspection.
Even if you’ve got a good eye and you’re comfortable climbing on top of your roof, there’s no substitute for a professional storm inspection. An experienced roofing contractor knows exactly what to look for so nothing goes overlooked. That also helps to ensure that everything is claimed on your insurance policy and repaired before it becomes a bigger problem.
Our experienced contractors at Just Roofing are trained to look for sections of shingles that are missing from your roof, shingles that have been damaged by hail, cracks, bubbling, and additional signs of water damage. With 40 years of experience under our belt, we understand how to look for more nuanced signs of damage that might cause trouble for you down the road if ignored today.
The Value of a Professional Roof Inspection
When you contact an experienced roofing contractor, you’re saving yourself trouble in the long run. Not all roof damage is readily apparent when looking at a roof from overhead. A professional roofing contractor knows to inspect more than just a home’s exterior. To get a complete picture of any damage, we’ll look inside a building underneath the roof.
These are just a few signs of roof damage that are commonly overlooked by non-professionals during an inspection:
● Excessive condensation
● Mildew and mold proliferation
● Signs of leaks
● Rafter streaking and moisture
● Damp insulation
● Tiny points of light that indicate holes in the roof
● Nail and hardware rust inside the attic
When your roof shows signs of damage after a strong storm, the last thing you want to do is put off repairs. One of the most common reasons for premature roof replacement is a failure to address minor storm damage. What starts off as a small problem can lead to serious damage or even total roof collapse when moisture and decay begin to add up over time.
At Just Roofing in Hampton, our residential roofing services team repairs residential and commercial roofs across Southeastern Virginia. We bring experience, certification, and competitive pricing to every roof repair job we take on. To schedule your storm damage inspection, call us at 757-310-3873. You can also contact us online to discuss your roof repair needs.