Having a new roof installed is an expensive investment that all homeowners will likely experience at some point. The key to making your roof last, and getting your full money’s worth out of it is by keeping it maintained. One of the best ways to do this is by having at least one roof inspection done a year by a professional roofing company.
Sometimes one routine inspection a year is not enough, and this is especially true after storms. If you experienced a severe storm recently and noticed roof damage or may suspect roof damage, it is always best to reach out to your insurance company and have an experienced roofer come to perform an inspection.
A lot of homeowners know that having roof inspections are needed to keep a roof maintained, but they don’t always know what exactly is being looked for during these inspections. Today we will be talking about what your roofing contractor will be looking for when inspecting your roof for storm damage.
Vents and flashing
When people think of roof damage they tend to only envision shingles being gone or a hole in a roof. In reality, yes those things can happen and are of course noted on inspections, but other things are equally as important and common such as damage to vents and flashing.
When inspectors look at vents and flashing they are searching for any types of dents that may be present. Dents are almost always caused by hail or other hard debris hitting your roof during a storm. Dents on any metal part of your roof are oftentimes a huge sign that there is damage elsewhere. Most of the time dents are not a huge deal and can easily be patched up or fixed.
Assess the property damage
This is the part that tends to surprise some people. Roofers don’t only look at the roof, but the entire ground level of your property. Prior to ever stepping foot on your roof, it is not uncommon for a roofer to take a full walk around your home looking for other signs of storm damage.
They check everything for damage including your gutters, downspouts, garage door, shutters, and even windows. They also check the lawn and home borders for any shingles that may have fallen off or other roofing/home components. They look for a variety of different things such as dents, holes, splash marks, and any other types of dings.
It is important for roofers to check for additional damage around the home because it helps them get a better idea of what type of roof damage could have occurred. If there is damage around the home after a storm, the probability of the roof taking on damage is pretty good.
Any type of shingle damage
If you have a shingle roof, your shingles will be thoroughly inspected and checked for any damage or wear and tear. It’s not uncommon for shingles to be lifted or bent after strong winds, or dented after hail. In some cases storms can be strong enough to blow off shingles entirely, leaving spots on your roof vulnerable to the elements. Keep in mind that some winds are strong enough to blow the shingles away from your property altogether so you will not find any during a ground inspection.
Even if all of your shingles are present and free of these signs, they will also look for shingles that lose their grain/grit, making them much less effective. This is caused by bad weather over time and will impact the integrity of the shingles.
Gutters and debris
During a roof inspection, the inspector will also look for any debris that may have found its way onto your roof. Debris oftentimes can include tree branches, leaves, dirt, and even trash should the winds be strong enough.
They will also take a look at your gutters. It is not uncommon that gutters become blocked after storms. The same debris that can be found on a roof can be found in gutters. Gutters are meant to orderly transport the water from your roof to the ground away from your house. When gutters get blocked by debris such as leaves and dirt, they cannot do this. Instead, the water will begin to pool up and overflow. This can damage your shingles or even impact your home’s foundation and lead to flooding or mildew. That is why it is also important to have your gutters cleaned out routinely. Blocked gutters will become known to you if found by a roofer and should be addressed right away.
I have confirmed there is storm damage to my roof, now what?
After a professional inspection, your roofer will go over their findings with you. If any damage is found they will make you aware of it and let you know what they recommend. No matter what, if you have any type of roof damage it is so important that you get it fixed as soon as possible. Roof damage never stays the same, it only gets worse. Avoiding fixing a damaged area will only lead to more damage down the line which will cost you more money in the long run.
If you know that your roof has storm-related damage, you can reach out to your insurance company to file a claim depending on how severe the damage is. For your sake and for any potential insurance claims, you should always have photos taken of any damage found during an inspection. Your roofer who performed the inspection can help you determine if filing a claim is best, or if it is better to just have it repaired.
Some roofing companies have more experience or even specialize in storm-related damages requiring insurance claims. These companies tend to know even more about the insurance claim process and can help you through it the entire way. If you suspect storm damage it is worth asking about a company’s experience with insurance claims as it can make the process a lot easier.
It may seem tempting to try to repair a damaged portion of your roof yourself to save some money, but we strongly advise against that. Unless professionally trained, you run the risk of not fixing it correctly which will lead to more serious damage and cost you even more money. Even if the roof looks repaired, there may still be damage underneath. Overall, it is best to stick to the professionals when it comes to something as expensive and important as a roof.
Wrapping it up
Storm damage is a serious thing and it is extremely important to address any damage to your roof that may occur right away. While it may seem easier to go on the roof yourself and look for damage, we advise against that for two reasons. The first is that it can be very dangerous. The second reason is that you may miss damage that will worsen over time. Roofers are trained to find damage and know exactly where to look and what the signs are.
We believe that it is so important to educate yourself about roofing so that you as a homeowner can get the most out of your investment and keep your home safe. This article is a great first step in doing that! We post weekly roofing content on our Learning Hub, and we cover everything there is to know about residential roofing. We even have articles relating to how to file an insurance claim for storm damage. We highly suggest checking it out if you are unfamiliar with roofing.
We are here to help!
At Liberty Roofworks we have over two decades of professional roofing experience under our belts, and that number keeps on growing. We understand that your home is your castle and your roof is a serious investment that deserves the best of care.
We are very experienced with the realm of storm damage and know exactly what to look for during an inspection. We also work with each of our customers throughout the entire process, keeping them informed on what’s going on, giving our expert opinions, and answering any questions they may have along the way.
We also are no strangers to insurance claims. The filing process may seem daunting to some, but we try to make it as easy as possible and will gladly guide you through it and even fight for you should the insurance company not provide an accurate amount.
Are you worried you may have storm damage to your roof? Please contact us and we will be more than happy to send out one of our licensed and certified roofing contractors to perform a thorough inspection. Should they find anything, they will guide you through your next steps and answer any questions you may have. Storm damage to a roof is never fun or comes at a convenient time, but we are here to make the repair process as easy and smooth as possible!