Is your region expecting a hail storm in the coming days? Hailstorms have been getting more destructive with time, and it is important to understand the extent of damage that a hail storm can cause to your property.
The size of hail, the strength of winds, and the age and quality of your house are major determinants of the extent of the damage. The most damage observed after a hail storm is in the roofing, windows, sidings, and any outdoor furniture that was not removed.
Please continue reading to understand the damage and the measures that can be taken to avoid or mediate the circumstances.
How Is The Extent Of Damage By A Hailstorm Determined?
Some factors that are related to the hailstorm are discussed below. These factors contribute to the storm’s intensity and the damage observed as a result.
Size Of Hail
The size of the hailstones determines the impact that they have on the surface that they hit. Hail measuring 1 inch or greater can cause significant damage to property, vehicles, and crops. Hail larger than an inch may cause more serious damage, such as broken windows and damaged roofs.
Hail smaller than an inch is less likely to cause significant damage but can still cause minor damage to vehicles and outdoor furniture.
Strength Of Winds
Hailstones are carried through the air with the wind. A stronger wind would be able to carry heavier hailstones. If the wind is strong enough, it can cause the hailstones to move faster, and the impact force will be greater.
Strong winds can also cause the hailstones to travel farther, leading to a larger impact area.
Quality Of House
The structure of the house you live in decides the extent of the damage. Better quality houses face fewer consequences than poorly built ones. Houses with weaker roofing materials and poor structural integrity are more likely to suffer greater damage, as the hailstones can more easily penetrate and damage the roof and walls of the house.
Houses with higher quality materials, such as asphalt shingles and sturdy construction, are more likely to withstand hailstorms with less damage.
Damage Caused By Hailstorms
Let us assess each part of the house that may experience impact in the wake of a hail storm.
Hailstorms can cause serious damage to windows, such as cracking, chipping, or shattering. If your windows have been damaged, you should call a window repair specialist to assess the damage and determine the best course of action.
Hailstorm damage to roofing can include broken shingles, cracked tiles, dents in metal roofing, and punctured skylights. Depending on the storm’s severity, there may also be damage to flashing, gutters, and other roofing components.
Dents and scratches in the siding are commonly observed after a hailstorm. The hail can sometimes be large enough to cause cracking or other structural damage. In an intense hail storm, broken seals and caulking may be seen, leading to water infiltration and damage to the underlying structure.
Some outdoor items are impossible to move indoors due to their size or how they are permanently installed. This makes them prone to damage from hail. Smaller hail might cause dents in metal items, while larger hail can break windows, damage roofs, dent cars, and damage outdoor furniture.
Additionally, hail can damage outdoor plants, including flowers, shrubs, and trees. Significant damage to outdoor structures, such as sheds and gazebos, may also be observed.
How To Detect The Damage?
Let us help you check off all the necessary parts of your house that must be inspected to detect damage.
Inspect The Roof
The roof is your house’s main area of impact during a hailstorm. Look for indentations, dents, or other noticeable signs of damage on the roof.
Check The Gutters
If the hail was large enough, it might have caused damage to the gutters and downspouts. Check for dents, holes, or other signs of damage.
Check The Siding
When hail falls at an angle, it can cause dents or chips in your house siding. Visually inspect the sides thoroughly to look for signs of damage.
Check Windows And Doors
Heavy hail can cause doors and windows to crack. If there are no cracks, look for other smaller signs of damage, like chips or dents.
Check For Loose Shingles
Hail may have loosened shingles on your roof. Inspect for any shingles that may have come loose or been damaged.
Inspect Your Yard
Look for any signs of hail damage in your yard. This may include broken branches, furniture, installations, or other debris.
What To Do After Damage Is Detected?
You have done a detailed inspection, and damage has been identified; now what? See the suggestions below to help you navigate the steps you must take after finding damage.
- Contact your home insurance company as soon as possible to discuss the damage and how to file a claim.
- You must document the damage. Take photos of the damage and list the items that were damaged. Keep all repair documents in a safe place.
- Find a reputable repair company to assess the damage and estimate the repair cost.
- Once you think your case is strong enough, file a claim. Submit the necessary paperwork and photos of the damage to your insurance company.
- After filing a claim, make sure you also monitor the claim. Follow up with the insurance company to ensure the claim is processed promptly.
- Once the claim is approved, contact the repair company to begin the repairs. Make sure that the repairs are performed to your satisfaction.
Prepare For A Hailstorm
If you have the luxury of time, it is advised that you take all necessary precautions to save your home. Below is a list of actions you can take.
- Move outdoor furniture and decorations indoors, or cover them with a tarp or blanket.
- Secure windows and doors with storm shutters or plywood.
- Trim dead branches from nearby trees to reduce the chance of them falling on your home during a hailstorm.
- If you have a car, park it in a garage or a covered area to protect it from hail damage.
- Ensure your gutters are clear and in a condition to drain water away from your home.
- Move valuable items away from windows and into an interior room.
- Have a first aid kit and emergency supplies in case of injury.
- Put on sturdy shoes to protect your feet from hail and broken glass.
- Turn off any outside electrical systems, like your air conditioner, to avoid potential damage from lightning.
Some other tips to prepare for hail are given in this Youtube video: https://youtu.be/Hg6alwNQFRk
Hailstorms are forecasted, and if your state advises you to take precautionary measures, it is best to heed their advice and take action. This article discusses how to prepare your house for a hailstorm. Understanding the extent of damage and the cost it may incur is crucial to help you take timely measures.