Metal roof installers Alabama

How Hail Can Damage Your Roof

Hail is a type of solid precipitation that forms within severe thunderstorms. It begins as small ice pellets that grow larger as they are lifted and lowered within a storm cloud, accumulating layers of ice. These frozen spheres can range in size from that of a small pea to as large as a grapefruit. When these icy missiles fall from the sky, they can cause significant property damage, especially to your home’s first line of defense – the roof. 

Roofs are designed to withstand a certain amount of natural wear and tear, but the intensity of a hailstorm can accelerate this process. Hailstones can damage your roof in several ways. Their high velocity and weight can cause direct physical damage, cracking, or dislodging roof tiles or shingles. Moreover, the impact of hail can also expose the underlayment or even the decking of your roof, making it more susceptible to further weather damage and leaks. It’s not just the immediate impact of the hailstones you need to worry about, but also the potential for ongoing issues, such as water damage, mold growth, and structural instability. 

Hail can cause different types of damage to your roof, often depending on the size and velocity of the hailstones, as well as the type of roofing material. The most common types of hail damage include bruising, cracking, and granule loss on asphalt shingles; dents and dings on metal roofs; and splitting and shattering of slate or tile roofs. Each of these types of damage can reduce the lifespan of your roof and lead to more serious issues if not addressed promptly.

How Hail Forms and Its Impact

Hail formation is a fascinating process that starts in the updraft of a thunderstorm when supercooled water droplets come into contact with condensation nuclei, such as dust, and freeze. As these frozen droplets are carried upwards by the storm’s updraft, they encounter more supercooled water and grow in size. Once the updraft can no longer support the weight of the hailstone, it falls to the ground. The size of the hailstone at the time of its fall is a significant factor in determining its potential for damage. 

Range Size of Hailstones

Hailstones can range in size from tiny pebbles to massive, grapefruit-sized projectiles. Small hailstones, less than half an inch in diameter, may not cause significant damage to a roof. However, larger hailstones can cause severe harm, with the potential to crack, dent, or even puncture certain types of roofing materials. The speed at which the hailstone falls also plays a significant role in the extent of the damage, with higher speeds leading to more severe impact damage. 

Impact of Hail on a Roof

The impact of hail on a roof can vary greatly depending on the type of roofing material. For instance, asphalt shingles may lose granules or crack under the impact of large hailstones, while metal roofs may dent. Wooden shingles can split or crack, and slate or tile roofs can shatter entirely. The damage can be cosmetic, such as dents and discoloration, or functional, leading to leaks and decreased lifespan of the roofing material. Regardless of the type of roof, it is essential to inspect for damage after a hailstorm to prevent further issues.

Types of Hail Damage on Roofs

Shingle Damage

In the section titled ‘Types of Hail Damage on Roofs’, we delve into the various types of hail damage that can occur on different roofing materials. First, let’s talk about shingle damage. Shingles, particularly asphalt ones, are susceptible to hail impact. The signs of hail damage on shingles include a randomized pattern of dark spots, loss of granules that protect against the sun, and exposed or cracked fiberglass mats. Shingles might also feel soft to the touch, much like a bruised apple. 

Metal Roofs

Next, metal roofs are not immune to hail damage either. While they may be more resistant than asphalt shingles, they are still prone to denting. Signs of hail damage on metal roofs are quite visible and include small to large-sized dents, scratches, or cracks in the paint. In some cases, severe hail can puncture a metal roof, leading to leaks. 

Tile Roofs

Thirdly, tile roofs, often made of clay, slate, or concrete, can also suffer damage from hail. The signs of hail damage on tile roofs are often in the form of cracks or chips on the tiles. In extreme cases, the tiles can shatter completely, leaving the underlayment exposed to the elements. Lastly, flat roofs, commonly made of EPDM, PVC, or TPO, can exhibit signs of hail damage in the form of surface cracks or splits, punctures, and granule loss. These types of damage can lead to water infiltration and serious leaks if not addressed promptly. 

Each type of roofing material presents unique signs of hail damage, making it vital to know what to look for after a hailstorm. Prompt detection and repair can save homeowners significant repair costs down the line.

Detecting Hail Damage

Using Binoculars for Visible Signs of Damage

Following a hail storm, it’s crucial to inspect your roof for any potential damages. Although it may be tempting to climb onto the roof yourself, safety should always be your top priority. Roofs can be slippery and unstable, especially after a storm, making them a hazardous environment. Instead, consider using binoculars from the ground to look for visible signs of damage such as granule loss, dark spots, or dents. If you have a drone, it can also provide a comprehensive view of your roof. 

Professional Roof Inspector

However, not all hail damage is easily visible from the ground, which is where the expertise of a professional roof inspector comes in. These professionals are trained to identify and assess hail damage that may not be noticeable to the untrained eye. They can spot issues like soft spots on shingles, scratches on metal roofs, or chips and cracks on tile roofs. A detailed inspection report from a professional can help you in filing insurance claims and planning necessary repairs. Thus, investing in a professional roof inspection after a hail storm can prove to be highly beneficial. Consider contacting Roofing World to schedule a professional roof inspection. 

Other Parts of Property Damage 

Apart from roof damage, hail can also affect other parts of your property. Look out for dents or cracks on your siding, windows, or gutters. Damaged air conditioning units, outdoor furniture, and vehicles are also common signs of a severe hail storm. Remember, some signs of hail damage might not be immediately apparent. Therefore, even if you think your roof survived the hail storm unscathed, it’s still a good idea to have it professionally inspected to prevent potential future issues.

Preventing and Repairing Hail Damage

Installation of Impact-Resistant Roofing Materials

Moving forward, it is essential to discuss preventive measures to protect your roof from hail damage. The first step in preventing hail damage is the installation of impact-resistant roofing materials. These materials, such as Class 4 asphalt shingles, are designed to withstand severe weather conditions, including hailstorms. 

Maintaining, Regular Inspections

Additionally, maintaining the overall health of your roof is crucial. Regular inspections and timely repairs can help prevent minor damages from escalating into significant problems after a hailstorm. It’s also beneficial to prune any overhanging tree branches, as they can break and fall on your roof during a storm, causing additional damage. 

Options for Repairing Hail Damage

Now, let’s explore the options for repairing hail damage. Depending on the extent of the damage, repairs may range from replacing a few shingles to installing a completely new roof. Smaller repairs can often be handled by a handy homeowner, but for extensive damage, it’s best to hire a professional roofing contractor. They have the skills and experience to safely and effectively repair your roof while ensuring it meets building code requirements. Insurance will typically cover hail damage repairs, so it’s essential to document the damage and work closely with your insurance company throughout the process. 

Emphasizing the importance of timely repair and maintenance cannot be overstated. Ignoring minor hail damage can lead to significant issues over time, such as leaks, structural damage, and even roof collapse in severe cases. Regular inspections and prompt repairs can help protect your roof and your home, and save you from costly future repairs. It’s also crucial to note that many insurance policies have time limits on hail damage claims. Therefore, delaying your roof inspection and repair could result in your claim being denied.


In conclusion, the potential impacts of hail on roofs can be extensive and severe, affecting the overall lifespan and functionality of your roof. Hailstorms can result in a myriad of damages, from minor cosmetic issues to major structural failures. Shingles can get cracked, dented, or even completely knocked off, and the underlayment and decking can also incur damage. These damages not only affect the aesthetic appeal of your home but also pose a threat to its structural integrity. 

The importance of professional roof inspections after a hailstorm cannot be overstated. A professional will accurately assess the extent of the damage and determine the most suitable repair strategy. They are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to identify subtle damages that may escalate into significant problems if neglected. Timely intervention by professionals can save you from costly repairs in the future and ensure the safety of your home’s occupants. 

Therefore, it is vital to protect your investment by maintaining your roof and addressing the damages promptly. Regular inspection and maintenance, particularly after a hailstorm, are key to preventing minor issues from escalating into major roof problems. Should you suspect any damage post a hailstorm, do not hesitate to contact a reputable roofing professional. Your proactive measures in safeguarding your roof will lead to its extended lifespan, enhanced performance, and ultimately, the safety and comfort of your home. If your roof has suffered from hail damage, don’t wait for things to get worse. Get in touch with the experts at Roofing World for a professional roof inspection and repair service. Trust us to get your roof back in tip-top shape so you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that your home is safe and secure. Contact us today!

Name, Address, and Phone

Roofing World 

328 S Sage Ave Suite 307-C, Mobile, AL, 36606, US


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