Extreme weather events become more common every year. This translates to huge financial losses for homeowners. Over the last seven years, extreme weather events in the United States caused an estimated $1 trillion in damages.
To make matters worse, wind damage to your home’s roof can leave the rest of the building vulnerable to water, debris, and even live pests.
So you might ask, “What to do when wind damages my roof?”
It can be a daunting question. Especially when you’re trying to put your life back together after a violent storm. Here are the key steps to carrying out emergency roof repair.
Assess the Damage
Once the storm has passed and it’s safe to go outside, you’ll need to see the extent of the damage.
This may depend not only on the strength of the storm but the condition of your roof before the event. Even under the best circumstances, a home’s roof needs to be replaced every 20 years or so. If it’s been a while since your roof underwent major maintenance, you can expect the damage to be more severe.
From the ground level, visually inspect your roof for any visible signs of damage. If you keep up with your regular roof maintenance, you may already have an idea of potential weak points that you need to check.
Look out for missing or broken shingles, torn flashing, or loose guttering. These are common indicators of wind damage.
If you have access to a safe vantage point such as an attic or a drone camera, take a closer look to identify any hidden damage. Check the interior of your home for signs of water infiltration or leaks. Wind damage can compromise the integrity of your roof and lead to water intrusion.
It’s important to note that not all wind damage is immediately visible. Subtle signs of damage include lifted or misaligned shingles, which can go unnoticed by the untrained eye.
If you suspect significant damage or are unsure about the severity of the situation, book a professional inspection. A trained expert will have the experience to assess the damage and provide appropriate recommendations.
Remember, the sooner you identify and address the damage, the better you can prevent further issues and mitigate any potential long-term consequences.
Make Temporary Repairs
While waiting for professional help or before initiating permanent repairs, it’s essential to make temporary fixes to prevent further damage. This step becomes even more crucial if the weather forecast predicts more high winds or rain in your area.
Start by covering any exposed areas of your roof with a tarp or roof sealant. Securely fasten the tarp to prevent it from being blown away by the wind. This temporary cover will protect your home from water infiltration and reduce the risk of extra damage caused by the elements.
In addition to using a tarp, you can also temporarily seal any visible cracks or gaps with roof sealant. Apply it to areas where shingles may have been torn off or flashing is damaged. Remember, these are temporary measures and should not replace proper repairs by a professional roofing contractor.
Document the Damage
To ensure a smoother insurance claims process, it’s crucial to document the wind damage to your roof. Before making any repairs, take clear and detailed photographs of both the roof and the close-ups of the affected areas. These visual records will serve as evidence for your insurance company and help streamline the assessment process.
In addition to photographs, it’s also recommended to keep a written record of the damage. Include dates, descriptions of the observed issues, and any immediate action you took to mitigate further damage. This documentation will help with the insurance claim and serve as reference material during the repair process.
Having thorough and accurate documentation can make a significant difference in your insurance claim’s success. It provides objective evidence of the wind damage and proves that you took all reasonable steps to mitigate any further damage.
Contact Your Insurance Company
Once you have documented the wind damage, the next step is to contact your insurance company. Report the damage as soon as possible to initiate the claim process without any delays.
When speaking with your insurance company, provide them with all relevant information regarding the wind damage. Including information like the date of the incident and a detailed description of the damage. Share the photographs and written records you prepared earlier to support your claim.
Your insurance company will guide you through the claims process and inform you of the necessary steps to take. Follow their instructions closely to ensure a smooth and efficient claims process.
Bring in a Roofing Professional
Above all else, it’s important to hire a professional to handle major repairs. While you may have identified visible damage, there could be underlying issues that only a trained eye can spot. A comprehensive inspection by a qualified roofing professional will provide a complete assessment of the damage and uncover any hidden problems.
Always insist on a fully licensed and insured contractor. This will protect you from further risks and liabilities during the repairs.
During the inspection, the roofing professional will evaluate the structural integrity of your roof. They’ll check for water damage or leaks, and assess the condition of the underlying materials. They will also look for signs of weakened or compromised areas that may require immediate attention.
Keep in mind that most insurance companies require a professional inspection before approving and covering the cost of repairs. The inspection report will help determine the extent of the damage and provide the necessary documentation for insurance claim purposes.
Never Again Wonder “What to Do When Wind Damages My Roof?”
Destructive storms have become a part of everyday life. Whether it’s a matter of weeks, months, or years, we can all expect to deal with hurricanes, tornados, or hail regularly. And we need to be prepared for the damage that can come with them.
So in the next severe weather season, don’t be caught wondering “What to do when wind damages my roof?” Just keep calm, go through this checklist, and contact us to have professional roof repair services dispatched to your home.