Common Signs of a Storm-Damaged Roof
When a powerful storm hits, it can leave a trail of destruction in its path. People often think of fallen trees, damaged fences, or other damage that is easy to see. The roof is one of the most vulnerable areas of a commercial building during a storm, but it can easily be forgotten because it isn’t always visible.
High winds, hail, and heavy rainfall can all cause damage to your roof, and if left untreated, can lead to costly repairs or even a complete roof replacement. Recognizing the signs of storm damage on a roof is critical in protecting your building’s structural integrity and keeping your family or business safe.
Keep reading to explore the most common signs of storm-induced roof damage and understand what to do if you find your building needs help.
How to Determine if You’ve Encountered Roof Damage From a Storm
Evaluate your property with the following steps:
Check for Missing Shingles
Shingles play a vital role in protecting your roof from the elements. They provide a barrier against wind, rain, and hail. It’s not surprising that they’re often the first to show signs of damage after a storm. A professional roofing contractor should inspect missing or broken shingles. Even a tiny vulnerability can let water into the roof’s underlayment, causing significant damage.
Pay Attention to Leaks
One of the leading causes of commercial buildings needing to be demolished stems from leaks in the roof. If you’ve noticed water spots on your ceiling or walls, water has penetrated the roof’s surface. These can result from missing or damaged shingles, granule loss, or damage to other areas of your roof, like flashing or the chimney. If the roof is not fixed quickly, water can seep into the insulation, framing, or even the electrical system, causing costly damage to the structure.
Watch Out for Granule Loss
Granules on shingles perform two essential functions: protecting the roof from UV damage and shedding water. Hail or high winds can knock off granules from your shingles, exposing the underlying material to the sun’s harmful rays.
Over time, this could lead to the shingle’s deterioration, making it more likely to leak or fail. You might notice grit in the gutters or patchy bald spots on the shingles after a storm. If you see these signs, the shingles are starting to lose their granules.
Of all the damage that will be discussed in this article, this is the one that is the easiest to overlook. It doesn’t take 60 mph winds or hail for this to become a problem, simple wear and tear is enough
Inspect the Flashing
Flashing is a metal installed around roof penetrations, such as vents, skylights, chimneys, or any roof surface interruption. If flashing is not installed correctly, it can become loose or bent over time, causing it to detach from the roof. Flashing can also be damaged by hail or high winds, which could result in water penetrating the roof.
This material is often overlooked. Taking time to have this inspected is well worth your time.
Check for Bent or Blocked Gutters
High winds and heavy rain can cause gutters to become bent or detach from the house or building. This might result in water damage to the building’s foundation or exterior walls. Check for signs of rust, cracks, or folded metal, as these are indications that the gutter may need to be replaced.
Also, check for anything that may be clogging the gutter from functioning. If you look at the gutter during the storm and see little to no flow, it is time to get it inspected. In that case, something may block the flow, leading to water sitting on the roof. When water sits on the roof for a prolonged time, it can lead to major issues that can cost thousands in repairs.
Watch Out for Animal Damage
Unfortunately, the storm can be an opportunistic time for animals to claw or chew through your roof. Tree branches or debris that fall on the roof can leave holes that allow animals to access the interior. Look for physical signs during your inspections, like scurrying sounds or skitter marks. Animal damage should be addressed as soon as it’s discovered, as it could result in more severe water damage.
In the first 10 years, a roof should be inspected biannually by a professional roofing contractor. If you’re overdue for an inspection, schedule a free assessment today!
I’ve Found Hail Damage to My Roof. What Should I Do Next?
If you’ve confirmed you have hail or wind damage to your roof, don’t hesitate to seek help. It’s essential to have a professional come to inspect it. Storm damage can severely impact the safety and integrity of your roof, and it can be difficult for an untrained eye to identify damage that may require repairs or replacement.
For example, they may notice missing shingles or cracks in the roof that could lead to leaks and water damage down the road. They can also assess whether the damage is cosmetic or structural and advise you on the best action to prevent further harm, such as waterproofing walls or replacing parts of a roof.
Another reason to have a professional inspect your roof is they can provide a detailed report of any damage they find. This report can be helpful if you need to file an insurance claim or plan to sell your facility.
A professional inspection can also help you prioritize repairs, so you can address any serious damage first and prevent it from worsening over time.
Recognizing the signs of storm damage on a roof is essential to keep your family or business safe and protect your roof’s structural integrity. The roof is always at risk during a storm, whether that’s missing shingles, cracked flashing, or bent gutters.
To avoid costly repairs, address any damage as soon as it’s discovered. In most cases, a professional roofer can repair the damage quickly, ensuring that you have a secure, stable roof over your head.
Let Rainville Carlson Help Keep Your Roof in Check
Rainville Carlson is the best choice for custom commercial roofing and maintenance services. Our experienced team of certified professionals has the expertise and know-how to tackle any commercial roofing job, no matter how small or large. We provide quality work at an affordable price, so you can trust us to get the job done right.
For superior commercial roofing services, contact us today.