Storms are a seasonal drama in many countries, but certain parts of the US are especially prone to big storms. Southern states like Florida, Texas, Louisiana, the Carolinas, and Alabama lie in the path of several major hurricanes each year. Major storms can cause millions of dollars’ worth of damage, much of it affecting homeowners. Out of all the parts in your home that could get affected, the roof is one of those that could receive the most damage.
When a hurricane barrels through, it’s time to batten down the batches and pray your roof survives. Oftentimes, unless the storm is a category 5 hurricane, your home will live to see another day. But if you are very unlucky or the storm is especially ferocious, there is a risk your roof will sustain major damage. In this instance, is it better to repair or replace? Let’s find out.
Assess the Damage
The first task following a storm is to assess the damage. Go outside once the weather has abated and perform a visual check. Look for signs of structural damage, missing shingles, and visible holes. Obviously, if you return to your property and discover the roof has blown into the next county, then there won’t be a lot you can do, but less serious damage can often be fixed.
A visual check should reveal any problem areas. Use a pair of binoculars if your eyesight isn’t too good or your roof is higher than one level. Check valleys, angles, and outer edges of your roof. Storm damage often hits vulnerable areas like these first. Check the garden area for misplaces pieces of metal trim and misplaced shingles. A roofing contractor might be able to use these when he comes to carry out a repair.
Next, head into the attic and look for signs water has come in or there are small holes. Even the smallest hole needs fixing, as water can cause significant damage in the long-term.
Did you hear heavy hail during the storm? If so, check for hail damage. Large hail can really pound soft shingles, leaving impressions and dimples. Make a note if you spot any problem areas.
Do Your Research
Before you even get in touch with a roofing contractor, you have to ensure that you’ve done your research. Don’t immediately trust the first roofing contractor that you get in touch with. You may not have assurance with the quality they’ll provide.
Also, once damage on the roof is visible, there are roofing contractors that immediately visit and give you a quotation. Some can even prey on your desperate situation to have the repair over and done with. Don’t fall for this.
Roofing repairs can be costly. But, when done correctly, it can bring your roof to an even better quality than it may previously have had, saving you thousands of dollars in the long run.
Click here to get started on your research process of a roofing contractor that you can trust.
Repair a Roof
If the damage caused is relatively minor, it won’t be necessary to replace the roof. Since it is always cheaper to repair rather than replace, an insurance company won’t recommend replacing unless there is serious structural damage. In the event you are not insured, speak to several contractors before you make a decision. If a repair is all that’s needed, consider whether you can do the work yourself. But if you have no equipment or experience, it’s best to use a qualified contractor such as Advantage Construction.
If you’re not sure about what you’re doing, never try to do any roofing job by yourself. You may think that you’re saving on the costs right now, but in reality, it’ll only cost you even more in the long run. More so, it can also severely cause a safety issue or put in danger those around you. The more prudent way to go is to leave it in the hands of the professionals.
Contact Your Insurance Company
For serious damage, contact your insurance company. This gives you the assurance that you have someone helping you out with the expenses that you’ll necessarily incur for trying to replace the roof or perhaps have a new one made.
An insurance company will want to make their own assessment, so don’t ring any contractors until you have spoken with them. If you need to carry out any emergency repair work, such as covering a gaping hole in the roof, keep any receipts for labor and materials, so you can put in a reimbursement claim later.
Some insurance companies require that you use a contractor from their list. Others give you free rein as long as the contractor is certified. Ask your claims agent what to do next so you don’t end up invalidating your claim.
It’s also important that you do this step as soon as possible. If you let time fly by, some insurance companies may deny your claim.
Storms can damage your home, particularly your roof. Especially when your roof is quite aged, you know that you’re one of those most susceptible to this damage. This is something that you may not be able to avoid, as roofs can deteriorate over time.
While this is an unpleasant experience, there are many ways on how to make things better. Start through these tips so you can be better to handle the ill-effects of your roof’s damage.