When hail hits your roof, it’s going to impact the roof in some way, but signs of hail damage appear differently on different roof types. For example, slate roofs generally resist hail damage, but when they do sustain damage, it appears in the form of cracked or broken panels. Hail can also leave jagged holes in the middle of slate panels. That’s very different from hail damage on asphalt shingle roofs, which often loosens the shingles’ granules (the ceramic flecks on each shingle’s top layer). When hail hits asphalt shingles, they can also create soft depressions in the shingle that leave the shingles open to water absorption and deterioration, which can cause roof leaks and other problems.
Additionally, different flat roof membranes sustain hail damage in different ways. Modified bitumen and built-up roof (BUR) membranes resist hail damage the most because of the gravel on their top layers. However, when they do sustain hail damage, the damage often appears as impressions left by smaller hailstones, around 1-½” in diameter. EPDM roof membranes also stand up well against hail storms, particularly when hit with larger hailstones around 2-½” in diameter. However, when EPDM roofs sustain hail damage, it appears as cracks or punctures in the membranes, especially if the membranes’ lower layers are soft and malleable. Finally, TPO and PVC membranes are most vulnerable to hail damage, especially later in their lifespans, when the plastics leach out of them. These membranes sustain hail damage that appears as cracks or semicircle patterns.
Now that we know how hail damage appears on different roof types, let’s go over the process for filing a claim for hail damage repair.