What Do I Do if a Storm Damages My Roof?

Updated on:

February 12, 2023

The roof is the most exposed area of the home, and due to heavy rains, massive snowfall, and scorching sun, it takes a beating 365 days a year. These factors are so vital that, with time, they cause leaks and other significant damage to the roof, which might have a substantial impact on the home’s interior.

However, when a storm hits, the roof is the most affected element of the home, causing damages to the roof, which can be severe or mild. When a storm hits and the roof is damaged, homeowners are often left stranded and don’t know what to do. However, there are specific actions to take regarding the damage your roof has suffered.

This post will tell you what homeowners should do when a storm damages their roof.

Types of Roof Damage Caused By Storm

After a storm hits, it’s ideal to go outside and inspect the possible damage that might occur to your roof. Even if the damage is insignificant, it can develop into big problems in the future and requires proper and immediate attention. Here are some of the possible roof failures that often follow a storm.

Wind Damage

One typical type of damage that occurs when a storm occurs is the deterioration of the shingles and falling of debris on the roof, leading to severe damage with time. This can often lead to shingles lifting or coming off, which leaves small opens for water to creep into the home during the next rainstorm.

Some damages to the roof are not usually obvious and require a thorough inspection. For example, missing flashing in the crevices is what you may not detect with a mere inspection of the roof. As such, it’s important to thoroughly inspect your roof after a strong wind rattles your home.

Hail Damage

Hail damage is one of the significant problems that can happen to your roof in the spring and fall. Hailstones can cause damage that may go undetected for a long time, and this will develop into more severe problems with the roof after a few storms. However, some dings and holes caused by hails are evident enough the moment they occur.

As such, it’s important to thoroughly inspect your roof after a hailstorm occurs. Detecting this damage early helps to know your next step of action, preventing insignificant damage from expanding.

Rain Damage

Rain damage is the most common of roofing issues. Unlike other roof damage, rain damage is usually noticeable and should be attended to before it generates more roofing problems. Roofs are prone to rain damage due to old age or other types of roof damage previously caused by a storm. These developments weaken your roof’s internal layers and expose them to moisture, leading to serious issues.

When you notice mold, leaks, and structural damage, this might be a sign that your roof needs to be replaced.

How to Identify Storm Damage

Before you know what to do after a storm damages your roof, you must understand the nature of the damage that has occurred. The common signs of a damaged roof due to a storm include missing roof shingles and water on a ceiling. Wet walls, damaged roof flashing, and stains on the wall are also signs that your roof has been damaged.

What to Do When Your Roof Is Damaged By a Storm

Let’s examine your task when your roof suffers damage from a storm.

1. Assess the damage.

After a heavy storm hits, your first task is to assess the damage that your roof might have suffered. This will help whoever you call next to understand the situation they’re coming into, or offering advice on. This is in no way an expectation of you to “inspect” your roof, but more specifically to help prepare the roofing company of what to expect when coming to your home. Generally, you can only access this damage during the daytime when you can clearly see your roof.
With a pair of binoculars, stand in a position that gives you viewing access to see your rooftop. It’s ideal for estimating the severity of the damage. Also, check if there’re missing shingles, meaning that the damage is severe. Often, only a few shingles will be missing at random areas on the roof.
This inspection lets you detect visible damage, which requires being documented. Record any signs of exposed plywood, missing shingles, and tarpaper.

2. Make simple fixes to minimize damage

While you cannot repair the whole of the damage, you can make certain fixes pending your roofer’s arrival. Making these fixes prevents further and worsening damage. For instance, when the damage occurs directly above your living space, water leaking into the house may cause more damage to your interior property. Temporarily covering this may be a good idea if you’re comfortable on a roof.

Even if there is nothing else you can do to minimize damage, placing a bucket directly under the area when the water is dropping and moving your valuables away from the leaking area is recommended.

If the damage is serious, use a strapped tarping method to waterproof it is also an option. One of our goals at Pristine Roofing and Construction is to help you take care of these issues fast enough to avoid you having to take any action on temporary measures.

3. Inform your insurance company

Contact your insurance company to know if your home insurance covers the damage or if you should hire a roofing contractor to make the repairs.

When a storm hits the whole city that many homes are affected, contractors can be busy, and you may find it challenging to hire a contractor to come and repair the roof damage immediately. Hence, your homeowner’s insurance could help immensely if you’re struggling to get someone out to your home. Contact your insurance company and explain to them what you’re facing if this is the case.

4. Contact a reputable roofing company

However, there’re situations when your homeowner’s insurance might not cover the damage, or you’d rather get an inspection from a company you trust before contacting your insurance. If that’s the case, we recommend that when hiring a contractor, ensure you look for a reputable and professional company in the business.  

When the storm affects many homes in your area, don’t make the mistake of hiring a contractor you find in the area, as you may come across roofing contractors who’re only there because they know a storm has just hit several homes in the area. Most of these contractors are not professional and have no reputation to lose when the damage reoccurs, even after a few days after the repair.

If your home has just been hit by a storm and needs a roof repair or a roof replacement, Pristine Roofing and Construction is here to help. We’re based in Amarillo, Texas, but also have some incredibly happy clients in Dallas, Lubbock, and everywhere in between.

Feel free to reach out to us if you have further questions! Or, check out our FAQ over here.

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