How to Know if Wind Has Damaged Your Roof

A damaged roof is one of the most troubling things homeowners experience. Not only do you count on your roof to keep you, your family, and your belongings protected from the elements, but roof repairs and replacements tend to be some of the most expensive home improvement projects.

After a major windstorm, it’s a good idea to survey your roof for damage. Knowing the signs of wind damage can ensure that you’re prepared to take the proper steps to repair or replace your roof.

Why Do Roofs Suffer Wind Damage?

Why Do Roofs Suffer Wind DamageView in gallery

One of the primary reasons roofs suffer wind damage is that wind does not hit roofs evenly. Some types of roofs, such as A-frames, don’t have multiple peaks and valleys, which helps minimize wind damage.

Other types, such as hip and valley roofs, have lots of peaks and valleys. The uneven peaks, combined with the swirling, unpredictable nature of wind, lead to damage.

Wind causes damage by getting under the roofing material. For instance, when wind gets under a row of roof shingles, those shingles may peel back and come off. The peeling shingles leave the underlayment and sheathing exposed to the elements, putting the roof in need of repair.

Did My Roof Suffer Wind Damage?

Once it’s safe for you to survey the damage to your property after a storm, here’s what to do.

Start the process of surveying your roof from inside your home. If the windstorm came with rain and hail, look for wet spots on your ceiling. But, since multiple layers comprise your roof, this isn’t always a guaranteed way to check for damage. In addition to the shingles, metal, or other roofing finish, your roof has a layer of underlayment and sheathing. If you don’t see water damage in your home, move outside your property.

In most cases, climbing onto your roof is not a good idea. Roofing contractors have the equipment to move around on a roof safely. They also know what footwear they need to ensure they don’t slip. The only safe way for you to survey the damage is to look at as many parts of your roof as you can from the ground. If you notice portions of the roof are missing or appear to be “curled,” you have roof damage.

If your home has a chimney, you may notice the effects of wind damage there. In some of the most extreme cases, chimneys may become damaged by strong winds. In almost every case, a crooked chimney is a sign of roof damage.

Even if you don’t see any evidence of damage, it’s a good idea to contact a roofing contractor to check out your roof after a storm. Roofing companies will often evaluate your roof for very little money.

What To Do If Your Roof Suffers Wind Damage

Tackling your own roofing repairs is not a good idea. Not only do you risk doing more damage to your roof, but working on roofs is dangerous.

Since a damaged roof creates a risk of water damage in your home, you should move any valuables away from areas on your ceiling that show signs of water damage. If that’s not possible, cover those items with tarps until a roofing contractor can repair the damage.

The next step is choosing a roofing contractor who can repair your roof. While you don’t want to waste a lot of time, you should try to get estimates from three or four reputable roofing contractors. Remember choosing the cheapest contractor isn’t always the best option.

How Much Does it Cost to Have a Roof Repaired?

The size of the damaged area on your roof will determine the cost of repairs. If a contractor needs to replace an entire roof section, it will cost more than just fixing a small area.

The type of roof that you have on your home also impacts the price. Copper roofs are much more expensive to repair than asphalt shingle roofs.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

How strong does the wind need to be to damage my roof?

According to the National Weather Service, by winds that reach 45 miles per hour can damage roofs.

Is wind damage covered by my insurance policy?

In most cases, homeowner’s insurance covers the cost of roof repairs that result from wind damage. You should check your policy to ensure that it covers wind damage to your roof.

Is it safe to stay in a home with a wind-damaged roof?

It depends on the severity of the damage. In the most extreme cases, wind damage to a roof may lead to structural damage to your home, making it unsafe.

Conclusion

A wind-damaged roof is one of the most stressful things a homeowner can experience. Knowing what to look for after a heavy windstorm ensures that you take the proper steps to protect your home.

When surveying your roof for damage, keep safety in mind. Evaluate your roof from the ground and if you suspect damage, call a roofing contractor.