Your roof is designed to protect your home from the harshest of elements. However, a severe storm or wind damage can give your roofing system a run for its money. Even if there aren’t any obvious signs of storm damage, like a fallen tree branch or large hole, that doesn’t mean you’re out of the woods.
As a homeowner, it’s essential to know what to look for if you suspect damage to your roof. In this article, we’ll cover the eight signs of storm damage and how to find them.
Read on to learn more about the storm damage that severe weather can cause.
Understanding Storm Damage
The first thing all homeowners should understand about storm damage is that it can occur regardless of whether a storm is severe or moderate. Sometimes, all it takes is an aging roof and a few hailstones to cause costly issues.
With that and mind, here’s an overview of the storm components that can contribute to roof damage:
- High winds. Harsh winds don’t just bend trees and tear apart weaker structures. They can also rip up your shingles, lift your roof edges, knock down gutters, and sweep up large debris, dropping them right onto your roof.
- Hailstones. Hailstones can range in size from a pebble to a grapefruit. Regardless of size, a hailstone can cause all kinds of damage to your roof, leaving cracks, dents, holes, and more.
- Heavy rain. Over time, heavy rain can lead to moisture penetration beneath your asphalt shingles and underlayment. Moisture damage can easily lead to structural damage, so it’s critical to pay attention to any signs of water damage coming from your roof.
The 8 Signs of Storm Damage to Pay Attention To
Most people don’t give their homes a proper assessment after a bad storm passes through. They look for the obvious, such as blown-around landscaping, broken windows, and so on. When it comes to checking for roof storm damage, however, you’ll need to take a closer look for the following eight signs:
1) Shingle Granule Loss
Shingle granule loss will present itself in the form of dark spots that have a similar appearance to holes and dents. The small granules on your asphalt shingles serve as a form of protection, and when they get knocked off during a storm, your shingles will become more vulnerable to moisture exposure and high winds. You’ll know for sure that there’s granule loss when you see bald spots on your shingles and granules in your gutters and downspouts.
2) Missing Shingles
With enough force, wind can tear off your roof’s shingles on its own. This is especially true for aging roofs that aren’t as strong as they once were. Missing shingles will be one of the more obvious signs of storm damage to your roof — and they also require immediate attention. Without shingles, your roof sheathing, underlayment, and insulation will be exposed, which will put the rest of your home at risk of water damage and structural damage.
3) Cracked, Dented, or Lifted Shingles
Another severe sign of roof damage is having cracked, dented, lifted, or curled shingles. This type of damage often occurs during hail storms that involve high winds, and they will leave the rest of your roof and home vulnerable to moisture seepage.
4) Water Damage
As mentioned earlier, water damage is dangerous as it can lead to serious structural damage. If you notice water stains or ongoing leaks on your top-floor ceilings and walls, it’s a sign that your roof is compromised and will either require a repair or a complete replacement. (You’ll also want to check your attic for wet insulation and dark spots signifying water stains or mold).
5) Debris on Top of the Roof
If you notice large debris, including branches, sticks, patio furniture, etc, on your roof or on the side of your home, there’s a good chance they made it there with great force — which equates to impact damage. If there’s a pile of debris on top of your roof, it can end up adding unnecessary weight, which can cause sagging. You’ll want to have the debris removed immediately and your roof inspected.
6) Dents in the Siding
Hailstones can dent everything in their path, and they often leave their mark on your home’s siding. This is especially true when the wind’s direction is carrying them right into the side of your home. As you walk around your home, if you see ample dents in your siding, then it’s almost guaranteed that there will be dents on your roof shingles — especially where the edge and eaves of your roof and sidings meet.
7) Broken or Clogged Gutters
If you notice that your gutters are clogged, then the water sitting in them will have nowhere to go but back up and underneath your shingles, where it’ll pool up. This can cause a significant amount of damage to the wooden boards along the roof’s edge (its fascia) as well as the underside of its eaves (also known as the soffits).
8) Visible Damage to the Roof’s Component
The other components of your roof include the chimney, vents, pipe boots, soffits, eaves, gutters, flashing, etc. If any of these components are showing dents, cracks, or fractures, or are completely broken, then there’s a good chance the surrounding area of your roof has been compromised.
What to Do When You Notice the Signs of Storm Damage
As you walk around the perimeter of your home, top floor, and attic or access space, it’s important to take photos and notes to document any roof storm damage you see. Once you’re done, you’ll want to get in touch with a trustworthy roofing company and schedule a professional roof inspection right away.
A reliable roofing contractor is essential to assessing the damage done to your roof as they have the skills and experience to determine whether you need a roof repair or a complete roof replacement, as well as how to go about the entire project. First American Roofing & Siding offers emergency roof storm damage services and quick turnaround times. Get in touch with us as soon as you notice one or more of the above signs of storm damage, and we’ll handle the rest!