A hail storm pounded its way through the Indianapolis area just a few days ago leaving damaged roofs, siding and windows in its wake. It's not the first time hail has made a mess of Indianapolis roofs, and it won't be the last.
Here's what to do if you think your roof has hail damage...
Get out and take a look. Sometimes hail damage is difficult to spot and sometimes it's obvious. Signs of hail damage to your roof include:
- black, quarter-size or larger polka dot spots on your roof
- granules from the damaged shingles in your gutter and downspouts
- chipping and dents on gutters, vents, siding and mailboxes
Request a free roof inspection from a reputable roofing company. After a particularly destructive storm, you won't have to seek out a roofing contractor. They'll show up at your door promising a new roof, and sometimes the moon. Here's how to tell if a roofing company is reputable or a scam waiting to happen:
- Check out the company with sources such as the Better Business Bureau and Angie's List for ratings and reviews.
- Ask neighbors and friends for recommendations.
- Ensure that the company has a physical address, is insured, and is state-certified.
Contact your insurance company. If it's determined that you have hail damage, you need to coordinate with your insurance company to get it fixed as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more susceptible your roof becomes to leaks and additional damge. Expect that your insurance company will:
- Ask questions about when the damage occured, the age of your roof, any previous damage or claims.
- Schedule a date for an insurance adjuster to inspect your roof.
- Make a determination of what repairs are necessary; they may decide you need an entire new roof or just spot fixes.
- Mail you a check for the repairs minus your deductible.
Things you shouldn't do if you think you have hail damage:
- Get up on your roof to look around. A visual roof check from the safety of ground level is all you should attempt. Leave to the professionals to do anything more.
- Assume that because you can't see hail damage it isn't there. Unless you get up on your roof - which you shouldn't - it may be hard to tell if you have hail damage. If you have good reason to suspect damage, contact a roofer.
- Allow multiple roofers to get on your roof. In addition to risking additional damage to your roof, you also risk an insurance adjuster rejecting your claim due to excess foot traffic.
- Try to make the damage look worse than it is. Your insurance adjuster will figure out that things have been tampered with and you will lose your right to a claim; or worse, your coverage.