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Identifying Signs of Hail Damage

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Asphalt shingles are one of the least expensive roofing materials on the market. While using an inexpensive roofing material can help you to keep your costs down, you have to inspect your roof frequently, especially after extreme weather, in order to make sure that your roof is in good condition. Hail storms in particular can wreak havoc on your roof. Identifying signs of hail damage early can help you to reduce the risk of leaks that create water damage in your home. 

Missing Granules

Hail of any size can scrape off the protective granules that coat your shingles. Once these granules are gone, the asphalt-impregnated substrate is exposed to the UV rays of the sun. The sun can then bake the volatiles out of the asphalt, leaving it brittle and prone to cracking. After a hailstorm, check your drains and downspouts for a buildup of granules. If you find them, climb up to your roof to get a better idea of how extensive the damage is. If you have a few damaged shingles, you can replace them to avoid further damage. 

Bruises and Cracks

Large hailstones can do more than simply scrape off the granules on the surface of your shingles. Some hailstones will merely bruise the shingles, leaving them susceptible to future damage. Larger stones can crack the shingles, leaving bullseye-shaped scars on your roof. The bruises are problematic in that they can develop into leaks given enough exposure to the sun. Cracks can start leaking immediately. In either case, you will have no choice but to replace the damaged shingles. 

Repair or Replace

One of the key factors in determining what to do about damaged shingles is determining how extensive the damage is. If over half of your shingles are damaged, you should consider simply replacing your roof. On the other hand, if you only have a few sections of seriously damaged shingles, then you are probably better served to attempt to make repairs on your own or hire someone to do the work for you. 

Hail is not the only weather event that can damage a shingle roof, but it is one that you need to take very seriously. While insurance companies will require a professional inspection before they sign off on footing the bill for a repair or for replacing your roof, you can conduct your own inspection and determine for yourself if the damage you find is something you can take care of on your own or if you need the help of professionals. Click here for more information about roofing repair.