A Guide to Identifying Residential Hail Damage

Most regions of the United States can be susceptible to hail damage during storms. North Carolina and South Carolina are no exception. If you are a Carolina homeowner whose property has been damaged by hailstones in the past, and you had a bad experience — or if you simply want to make sure you’re well-prepared for this situation should it ever arise — you are in the right place. 


As you read the remainder of this article, you will find several tips that will help you identify residential hail damage to both your roof and your siding. Dealing with hail damage can be frustrating, but if you have homeowner’s insurance with a reputable company, your agent will be able to help you find a trustworthy local contractor, like the team at Hatch Homes, to get your house back in tip-top shape in no time. 


Before we dive into the telltale signs of hail damage, it is important to be aware of the fact that the size of hailstones isn’t necessarily equal to the amount of damage they are able to do. For instance, two-inch hail can actually cause less damage than one-inch hail if the winds accompanying it are weaker. 


Roof Hail Damage Red Flags 


Small dents in metal – Most roofs actually have several metal components, particularly flashing and roof vents. It is generally easier to see dents in metal than it is on shingles, especially to the untrained eye, so it’s smart to check your flashing and vents first. 


If you see small dents glinting in the sun, it’s likely that hail has damaged your home. Remember, flashing is one of the key components in keeping your family warm and dry, so if it is damaged, it needs to be replaced as quickly as possible. 


Check for cracks and missing shingles – Nearly ¾ of the homes in the United States have asphalt shingles on their roofs. Cracks in shingles are one telltale sign that hailstones have hit your roof. Missing shingles are another thing to keep your eyes peeled for, especially if you know your roof had all of its shingles prior to the recent storm. 


Look for dimpled shingles – Dimpled shingles can also be an indication of damage. If you see a puckered area on any of your shingles, press on it and see it gives under your finger. If so, an immediate replacement is necessary because the shingle is no longer fully functional. 


Siding Hail Damage Red Flags


Figure out if there is oxidation – Oxidation is the key indicator that siding has sustained hail damage, particularly if it is made from aluminum. It can be tempting to simply paint over oxidized siding to give it new life, but in reality this is only masking a potentially major problem. 


To test for oxidation, simply run your finger along an aluminum siding board. If a chalky residue remains on your hand — and especially if you also feel dents and dimples on the siding — it is time to consider replacing it. Oxidized siding is considered compromised and could ultimately lead to water damage, mold infestations, and structural damage. 


Look for warped and dented boards – No matter what material your Carolina home’s siding is made from — aluminum, wood, vinyl, or even fiber cement — warping, dents, and cracks are all red flags when it comes to determining whether or not hail damage occurred. 


Remember, if you are uncomfortable checking the exterior of your home for hail damage following a severe storm, the team at Hatch Homes is here to help. Your insurance provider may also be able to send an adjuster to assist you on relatively short notice. 

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