Storm Season is coming: Are You Ready?
Colorado’s storm season is upon us! From mid-April to mid-September, it is essential that we prepare our homes for the possibility of damaging hailstorms.
Why Is Hail So Damaging?
The ability of hail to cause significant damage is directly related to the size of the hailstones. The larger the hailstone’s diameter, the higher its impact energy, which results in more damage. Even stones the size of a penny can have a velocity of up to 25 mph and cause damage to composition shingles and aluminum vents and siding. As the stones increase to the size of, say, a half dollar (1.5 in diameter), damage can occur on a vast scale to many structures, including metal roofing, awnings, and vehicles.
Table courtesy of www.hailalerts.com
It is important to keep in mind that hailstorms with stones large enough to cause significant damage are rare, but not impossible. On May 8, 2017, for example, Colorado experienced a record-breaking hailstorm with golf-ball sized stones in some places. The resulting damage cost insurance companies $2.3 billion in claims!
How to Prepare Your Roof for Hail Season
As well as making general preparations for when hail is predicted, you can take measures to mitigate damage to your roof and other structures.
Get to Know Your Roof
● Take a close look at your roof and gutters. Document any visible wear-and-tear, such as curled or cracked shingles, bald patches, granules in the gutter, or any other signs of an aging roof. Repairing any existing damage ahead of time will help you to avoid more extensive repairs following a storm.
● In addition to your own observations about your roof, it is wise to have your roof professionally inspected prior to storm season. A local, licensed roofer can tell you if your roof needs minor repairs to be ready for hail, or if it needs more significant repairs and possible replacement. In the event of a storm, many insurance policies will only offer partial coverage if the roof is old or has not been maintained properly.
Get to Know Your Insurance
● You will want to have a good understanding of what your homeowner’s insurance covers and what your deductible is. Most homeowners insurance covers at least some, if not all, of the cost to repair hail damage to your roof and windows. In some cases, you can opt for a specific hail damage policy that includes even more coverage.
● You will also want to be sure that your policy includes a Replacement Cost Value (RCV). This will pay you the entire amount should you need to replace the roof. You should qualify for this as long as your roof is newer and in good condition.
● Ask your insurance agent if your policy includes a code endorsement, which pays for any code standards required in your area. If it does not, ask to upgrade-it is typically inexpensive and can save you thousands of dollars in the event that you need to replace your roof.
Research a Local Roofer
When hail storms hit, the “Storm Chasers” come out. Storm Chasers are typically out-of-state companies that send out high-pressure salesmen to a region immediately following a big storm. Nobody looks forward to those awkward knocks on the door! That is why it is important to research and have a relationship with a local roofer before storm season hits.
Local roofers have several advantages over chains:
1. They are well-versed in your area’s specific needs. They will know what materials and specifications are best-suited to your home.
2. They are accountable and responsible for their work. A physical residence in your state means your local roofer will be available to you to answer questions and make repairs in the future, and not “disappear” once work is complete.
3. They will not cut corners. Local roofers have a reputation to uphold! They will not cut corners or rush a job to move on the next. Earning your trust through quality workmanship is our top priority.
Hail storms can be stressful, but J&K Roofing is here to provide Calm after the Storm℠. We will be here to guide you through the repairs and insurance process. In the meantime, we offer free roof inspections in the Denver Metro, Front Range, Colorado Springs, and Fort Collins areas. Call us today to make sure your roof is ready!