After a hailstorm, it's always a good idea to inspect your roof. And in order to inspect it properly, you have to know just what problems hail can cause. Metal roofs, with their durability and impact resistance, generally hold up well to hail; however, damage is still a possibility, and the signs of damage are not necessarily what you would think.

There's quite a bit you can see from the ground with a pair of binoculars, so giving your roof a preliminary inspection yourself can give you a good sense of whether the hail was serious at all. Walking on the roof yourself, however, may dent it, so if you do think you've got hail damage, having a professional inspection is a very good idea.

Dents

When people think of hail damage, they often think of dents. This is the most obvious type of damage to a metal roof, but it is also the least important. Nearly all metal roof dents are cosmetic issues. If the storm has brought down tree limbs or other heavy debris and caused massive dents, then you may have a problem – look for areas where the roof dent has damaged or pulled apart a seam. And if your roof is made from metal shingles instead of panels, look for dents large enough that they have pulled the shingle edges apart from each other.

Cosmetic metal panel dents from even large hailstones can be safely left alone as long as you don't mind how they make your roof look. However, it's worthwhile to ask your homeowners insurance what their coverage is for cosmetic hail damage – some policies cover this damage, and getting it fixed means not having to worry about it if you need to sell your home or refinance your mortgage.

Fasteners

The fasteners for a metal panel roof should be secure in the roof; look for any that are missing or raised up from their panels. If this has happened, you'll need to have those fasteners replaced or tightened. Beyond that, there is a second problem to watch for: fasteners that have tightened too far.

Fasteners are usually separated from the metal panels by a thin layer of neoprene. If this is damaged and the fastener rests against the panel itself, the metal contact can cause corrosion. This will be difficult to see in an amateur inspection, so relying on a professional to look at your roof or watching for signs of rust are your best bets.

Sealant Damage

Damage to the sealant on a metal roof is the most difficult damage to see, and it's one of the best reasons to get a professional inspection if you think your roof might have been damaged. When inspecting your roof yourself, however, there are still some signs you can look for.

In areas where the roof looks dented from hail, watch for fine cracks or flaking. The metal itself, of course, is not flaking apart – instead, this means that the sealant on the surface of the metal is damaged and coming off. Since the sealant is crucial to keeping your roof protected from the elements, sealant damage should be fixed as quickly as you can.

For more tips and information about checking your roof after a storm, contact a company like Allen Roofing & Construction Inc.

Share