Managing Wind and Hail Damage to Your Roof

wind hail damage roof

There are several elements that may threaten your home and its roof during a major storm, and two such elements that are often seen together are hail and wind damage. These two weather elements, while likely rare in your area, don’t need long to wreak havoc on roofing systems that are not properly secured or maintained, and can lead to significant water damage and other hazards.

At The Roof Doctor, we offer a wide range of storm damage roof repair services, including for roofs that have been damaged by wind or hail. We’re also happy to assist you with navigating the ins and outs of the insurance maze in situations where filing a claim is necessary to help you cover the cost of needed repairs. Let’s go over some tips we can offer for protecting your roof from the risks of hail and wind damage, the process of assessing such damage if it does take place, and how to handle repairs and insurance claims in these cases.

Protecting Your Roof from Hail and Wind Damage

A few general tips for protecting your roof from wind and hail damage, including several where our roof repair pros are happy to help:

  • Regular inspections: At least once a year, if not more often, ensure your roof is inspected in a detailed manner. Any damaged, missing or curled shingles should be replaced or repaired right away, and any more significant issues should be reported to your insurance company right away – waiting too long to notify them could lead to a refusal of your claim in the future.
  • Attic: Every few months, or more often during storm season, check your attic for mold, mildew, stains or any other signs of water making its way through the roof. Also look for high levels of humidity.
  • Trees: Clear your property of any dead or rotting trees, which can create major damage or even destroy the roof entirely if they fall during a wind storm. In addition, clear out any overhanging tree limbs that might fall onto the roof.

Repairs and Insurance Claims for Hail or Wind Damage

In many cases, storm damage from wind and hail won’t be easy to see. This is why a few of the areas above are so important, including checking the attic and roof inspections – they’ll help you identify the evidence of damage even if it’s mostly hidden.

If you do identify wind or hail damage on your roof, one important area to consider is filing an insurance claim using homeowners’ insurance. Within this area, it’s vital to note that not all insurance companies offer the same plans here – most landlocked states feature policies that cover both windstorm and hail damage, but not all. Meanwhile, coastal areas often see insurance companies remove this coverage and require it as a separate policy, given the high risk of such damage in these areas. Make sure you understand exactly what your policy covers before moving forward – our pros are happy to help with this and other insurance-related details.

For more on wind and storm damage and protecting your roof, or to learn about any of our emergency roof repair services, speak to the staff at The Roof Doctor today.

What to Do After Major Roof Storm Damage, Part 2

major roof storm damage

If your structure has dealt with recent storm damage and requires resulting roof repairs, the professionals at The Roof Doctor are at the ready. Our storm damage roof repair services are second to none, and on top of the highest-quality materials and technicians working on your roof, we’re also proud to provide assistance with assessing the scope of the damage and resulting insurance claims.

In part one of this two-part blog series, we dug into some of the immediate insurance-related areas you have to consider after storm damage impacts your roof. In today’s part two, we’ll look at the ins and outs of actually filing your primary claim when the time comes, plus a few important before and after areas to be sure you consider properly.

Before Filing – Check Deductible

For starters, there’s one area to be diligent in checking before you enter the process of filing your insurance claim: Your insurance policy deductible. Take the time to get an estimate of the damage and the cost to repair it, something our pros are happy to help with, and then check this number against your deductible – if the cost won’t be too much higher than the deductible amount to begin with, you may decline to file the claim at all.

Reporting Claims

It’s important to stay on top of things here and make these determinations quickly. Here are some general tips on filing your claim once you’ve decided that this is the proper course of action:

  • Generally speaking, we highly recommend discussing the details of your coverage with an insurance adjuster, not with your insurance agent.
  • Your insurer can be a resource to you throughout this process, one you should lean on if you have questions or concerns. This is an experienced, objective party, one who often has connections with local contractors and can get you great deals on your repairs.
  • For those looking to handle their claims online, a growing number of insurers can process these claims seamlessly.
  • If you’re unsure about your insurance policy or looking for a new agent or policy, the Utah Insurance Department keeps an online search tool

Post-Filing Details

Throughout the claim process, even once you’ve filed, it’s vital to keep detailed records of all the damage on your property. If you choose to make temporary repairs while waiting on your claim, something we discussed in part one of this blog, ensure you have copies of receipts and any other documentation needed. We recommend keeping a phone log for all related calls made in this area.

In addition, a few post-filing details to be aware of:

  • The insurer has a minimum of 30 days to investigate the claim in question.
  • Within 15 days of filing your claim, your insurance company should contact you. Insurance companies should always provide a response within 15 days of a reasonable request.

For more on filing insurance claims following storm damage, or to learn about any of our roof replacement or roofing repair services, speak to the staff at The Roof Doctor today.

What to Do After Major Roof Storm Damage, Part 1

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At The Roof Doctor, we’re your full-service roofing company to call for all storm damage roof repair needs. Your roof can be heavily impacted by major storms, but we’re here to keep you and your family protected – and to assist you with the proper assessment of damage.

If and when windstorm damage causes significant issues with your roofing system, taking the right course of action from the beginning is vital to ensuring you stay protected without running up too high a cost. This two-part blog will detail a number of tips from both our pros and the Utah Insurance Department on how to react after roofing storm damage to ensure everything goes smoothly.

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Immediate Actions

Immediately after noticing significant storm damage on your roof, or even the signs of it like leaking water in attic or other nearby areas, there are a few things you should be thinking about:

  • Damage mitigation: To whatever degree you can accomplish this without risking your safety, try to protect the home from further damage. If you can cover the roof with a temporary blocker of some kind to keep further moisture from seeping in through damaged areas, this is a good start.
  • Documentation: Before attempting any significant repairs or removal of debris, take pictures and possibly video of the damage. Be detailed and specific.

Evidence: If you pay for temporary repairs, which we’ll detail in a moment, the costs here are usually covered by your insurance policy – so long as you have detailed receipts to provide.

Temporary Repairs

In some cases, temporary repairs to alleviate water damage or other immediate issues will be the proper route to take after storm damage. In these cases, you should only ever use professional contractors like ours for these repairs.

If you’re unsure whether a given contractor is properly licensed for these sorts of issues, contact the Utah Department of Occupational and Professional Licensing to find out. Also be sure to ask for a certificate of insurance from the individual contractor – even if a contractor is properly licensed, you should not hire them if they do not have the adequate insurance coverage.

Fallen Tree Removal and Insurance Coverage

In many cases, these temporary repairs or remediation services will involve removing fallen trees from the property. A few general tips on whether or not these areas are likely to be covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy:

  • Vehicle: If fallen trees have impacted and/or damaged any vehicle on your property, personal or commercial, it’s unlikely the vehicle will be covered under your policy. Rare vehicle insurance policies do have coverage for this area, but most also do not.
  • Property: However, trees removed from the home, sheds, detached garages or other structural areas will usually be covered by the homeowner’s insurance policy – though there may be a maximum dollar limit to be aware of here. Replacing the tree, however, usually is not covered here. If you’re unsure, speak to your insurance adjuster – not your agent – to find out more.

In part two of this blog series, we’ll go over some of the ins and outs of filing your insurance claim and ensuring you get the proper compensation for the damages that are covered. For more on this or any of our roof repair or installation services, speak to the staff at The Roof Doctor today.

Understanding Your Homeowner’s Insurance Policy and Roof Impact

understanding homeowner’s insurance policy roof

Insurance of any kind is meant to bring a sense of security to policy holders. Research proves that most people trust their insurance agents and carriers because they believe that they have the consumer’s best interests at heart. It’s easy to forget that insurance is business – and a HUGE one at that – and insurance companies make money when they do not pay claims.

Homeowners often have a false sense of security when it comes to their home, believing that their homeowner’s insurance policy will cover everything in case of a loss from a disaster. The reality is that insurance policies vary greatly in cost and benefits, so it’s vital to become very familiar with your policy.

As a local roofing contractor, we cannot emphasize strongly enough the importance of understanding your homeowner’s insurance policy, down to the most minuscule details. Doing so will leave you prepared to take the correct actions if you ever are hit with a disaster, so you can focus on recovery instead of trying to figure out where to start.

Areas of Homeowner’s Insurance Coverage

Generally speaking, homeowner’s insurance policies come in packages. These packages will contain some or all of each of the following areas – areas you should be well aware of before signing up:

  • Dwelling: For damage to the home and any attached structures, plus any fixtures, wiring or related systems.
  • Additional structures: Non-attached structures like sheds, fences, solo garages, guest homes or others on your property are covered here.
  • Personal property: Covers the value of personal possessions, from electronics and appliances to smaller items like clothes.
  • Personal liability: Your financial loss if you’re sued and found liable for damages to someone else on your property.
  • Medical payments: Will cover medical bills for people hurt on your property.
  • Loss of use: Covers additional living expenses, if needed, while the home is being repaired after damage.

Coverage Limits

It’s important to also understand that each of the above areas comes with limits. Your coverage will carry the full replacement cost of the home or area included, but this is not the same as market value for the property – you should check regularly to ensure your coverage doesn’t drop below the full replacement value.

From here, consider limits on each individual area. In most cases, coverage in areas like additional structures (generally 10 percent), personal property (50 percent) or loss of use (20 percent) will be expressed as a percentage of the total coverage amount, while you will have your choice of the coverage limits for the overall dwelling, personal liability and medical payments.

Understanding Deductibles, Declarations and Exclusions

Let’s go over three other terms that are very important for homeowner’s insurance:

  • Deductible: The deductible is the amount of money you pay out-of-pocket before the policy kicks in and covers the rest. A higher deductible generally comes with lower premiums, and vice versa.
  • Declarations page: This is the section of a policy that specifies your basic information – name, address, policy length, policy limits, and perhaps others. You should always have a copy of your homeowner’s insurance declarations page in your home.
  • Exclusions: Exclusions refer to provisions that eliminate coverage for certain risk areas – essentially, exclusions limit the scope of your coverage in certain areas, so it’s vital you understand them.

For help with storm damage or any other area of roof repair, speak to the staff at The Roof Doctor today.

Choosing Proper Color for New Roof Shingles

choosing color new roof shingles

At The Roof Doctor, we’re your one-stop shop when it comes to roof shingles. For any of our roofing styles that involve them, including shake roof installations that lay shingles in a specialized manner to help with weather resistance, we’ll provide you with only the highest-quality shingles and the expertise to go with them.

This includes some areas that may seem simpler as well, and one such area is choosing the proper color for your shingles during a roof installation. You may think this is purely a quick aesthetic choice if you’ve never been through the process before, but in fact, choosing color can have some important ramifications on home value and other factors down the line. Here are some basic tips and areas to consider when choosing proper shingle color.

Siding and Other Current Home Colors

For starters, consider the color scheme already present in your home and how you can complement or contrast it using your new shingles. Some homeowners choose shingles that directly match the color of their home’s siding, for instance – this presents a consistent, simple theme that people will easily take in when they view your home for the first time.

There are plenty of other creative tactics you can take here, though. Some, for instance, choose to match shingle colors with smaller accents, such as window trim or door colors (some homes will color their entry door, garage door and roof shingles all the same shade). We don’t recommend choosing colors that directly clash with your siding, however, as this can distract from the focus and make your home an eyesore.

Curb Appeal Considerations

Your own personal preference is very important here, but so is keeping in mind curb appeal factors. Curb appeal is a term used in the real estate world that refers to the first visual impression people get of your home – it’s known to have an outsized impact on home value, meaning it’s important to consider. Popular shingle colors may up your home value a bit if you’re considering selling in the future, particularly when they match well with the rest of your color scheme.

Advice – Professional and Otherwise

It’s never a bad idea to ask the pros for their advice – our roofing installation experts have been at this for decades, and we’re happy to provide tips on shingle color choice. But you may also want to solicit advice from non-professional sources like your neighbors, particularly if you’ve just moved to the area recently; they can tell you if there are any HOA guidelines for shingle colors or neighborhood restrictions you should know about, preventing you from spending significant money on a color that you’ll have to change later.

For more on choosing the proper color for roof shingles, or to learn about any of our roof installation or repair services, speak to the pros at The Roof Doctor today.

What Roof Water Stain Colors are Telling You

roof water stain colors

There are a few vital areas of any home that owners should be keeping an eye on and inspecting every so often, and at the top of this list is the roof. The roof is the primary line of defense against various elements and unwanted temperatures, but failure to regularly inspect and maintain it will lead to failure in important areas, discomfort within the home and often high levels of cost and hassle for repairs or replacements.

At The Roof Doctor, we’re here to help. We’ll assist you with identifying and understanding any issue you happen to spot on your roof, from major leaks or shingle damage to much smaller concerns that still impact both function and value. One such issue: Water stains that, over time, begin to change the appearance of your roof in permanent ways. There are a couple of varieties of roof water stains, generally separated by the color they create – here are some basics on each category, plus what they tell you about which of our roof repair services might be needed.

White or Yellow Stains

If you’re assessing your roof and notice the presence of white or yellow discoloration forming from moisture-related stains, it’s most likely you’re dealing with a hard water buildup. For those who don’t know, hard water refers to water that has not yet been treated and contains various quantities of mineral deposits – deposits that affect both human well-being and the efficiency of various water-related appliances.

When it comes to the roof, hard water deposits can cause major discoloration and even actual damage. This type of stain is generally found on the lower areas of the roof, often under cooling units where hard water is present.

Black or Green Stains

Black or green water stains, on the other hand, generally indicate actual living organisms that are growing on your roof. These are generally algae or moss, which are created through a combination of the moisture content present and the sunlight beating down onto the roof.

These deposits can be damaging if they grow large enough, but they’re also attractive to certain other creatures that may cause more direct damage.

Professional Assessment

In both cases listed above, power-spraying and scrubbing solutions are generally not recommended. These can actually make both issues worse and could even cause permanent damage in some cases. Some minor hard water stains can be remedied over time using a vinegar solution, which dulls them out.

In general, though, we recommend calling the professionals for this sort of thing. There’s high-level equipment and chemicals meant for this sort of thing, and you may also benefit from sealers or water-repellant shingles installed on your roof.

For more on dealing with water stains building up on your roof, or to learn about any of our roofing repair or installation services, speak to the staff at The Roof Doctor today.