There is not a universal definition of hail damage that every adjuster or insurance company accepts. However, there are four primary signs of damage that adjusters look for to see if your roof has suffered hail damage or just normal wear. Some insurance companies will consider the presence of one of these signs sufficient, but other companies might require two or more signs to be present on the same roof.
• Missing granules are normally the first thing that an adjuster will look for to prove hail damage. When asphalt shingles are manufactured, colored granules are blended and then rolled into the dark substrate. Hail stones can knock these granules off or force them into the shingle’s substrate. Either way, the adjuster will be able to see the exposed substrate.
• Bruising is the next thing the adjuster will check. If there are missing granules, the dark area may be spongy or soft, much like a bruise on a peach or banana.
• Mat breakage occurs when an object (such as a hail stone) strikes a shingle with enough force to break the fiberglass mat that forms the “backbone” of the shingle. Broken or cracked shingles allow water penetration that could damage the roof deck or result in interior leaks.
• The pattern of damage is normally the final test for hail damage. The roof should show a random pattern of similar damages.
Collateral Hail Damage
If your property has been exposed to hail, there is a very good chance that more than your shingles have received damage. Gutters, siding, fascia, roof vents, windows, flashing and window screens may have been damaged as well. Such collateral damage can provide excellent support for a hail-damaged roof if the adjuster is uncertain about the cause of the damages.
Almost all insurance policies will cover collateral hail damage. If collateral damage is included on the adjuster’s initial report, you can prevent delays or underpayments. Therefore, it is always a good idea to have a reputable roofing contractor conduct a joint inspection with the adjuster. Your contractor might notice damages that the adjuster could miss.
If you suspect that your roof has suffered hail damage, contact the professionals at Alpha Roofing Industries. We have more than three decades of industry experience, and we can help you navigate the often-complex world of adjusters and insurance companies. You can request a free quote by submitting our online form, or you can call our office at (512) 777-1086.