It’s summer here in southeast Michigan, which means it’s storm season – destructive winds, torrential rains, and, unfortunately, damaging hail. We’re getting a good deal of weather this week, which means hail damage is something that residents of Oakland, Macomb, St. Clair and Wayne counties need to worry about. So what’s the most important thing a homeowner can do when hail strikes? Protect yourself – call your insurance company. Hail stones as small as a dime can do warranty-voiding damage to your roof and siding. Even if damage looks minor, it’s in your best interest to repair it as soon as possible.
Some roof hail damage Michigan facts:
- Hail stones range in size from 1/4 inch in diameter (the size of a pea) up to golf ball size (1 1/2 inches) and larger. (The largest hailstone recorded was a whopping 7 inches!) Hail that causes real damage to your roof (beyond cosmetic dings) usually occurs with marble-sized hail (1/2 inch diameter) and larger.
- Damage from hail depends not only on the size of the hail but the direction and speed of the wind, and the angle at which the hail hits your roof. A glancing blow from a very large hailstone is not as destructive as a direct hit from a smaller stone.
- Roof damage from hail ranges from the cosmetic to complete destruction. A roof should be replaced when there is significant granule loss on the shingles, penetration of the shingle, or shingle fracture.
- Even if your roof is old, the good news is your insurance most likely covers roof replacement cost, which is often much more than your current roof’s value.
- The best time to file a claim is within 2 months of storm damage. While insurance companies may still pay out on claims up to 6 or even 12 months after a damaging storm, they tend to pay less and less the longer you wait.