How Hail Affects a Metal Roof

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Metal roofing has a lot to recommend it when compared to traditional asphalt composite shingles or cedar shakes. The fact that metal is not really a combustible roofing material (Class A or B fire resistant rating) is cause for peace of mind, but it also does well in the elements – an important thing in Texas. Hail damage to all roofs is always a concern.

Hail Damage

Hail is fairly common around the central Texas and Austin area, with an average of 31 days per year. Tornadoes have been reported on an average of 12 days per year. Although metal roofing fares better in these conditions, hail damage is not beyond the realm of possibilities.

Denting is the Most Common Damage

While hail is unlikely to blast a hole through your metal roof, a dent is far more likely. Since most hail strikes the roof at approximately 90 degrees, the steeper the pitch, the less damage is likely.

The most common metal roofing is made from either hot dip galvanized or Galvalume® coated steel sheets. These are either coated using zinc or aluminum-zinc alloy. The two most important factors determining dents are the dent resistance of the steel and its thickness. If you are a candidate for frequent hail, thicker is always better.

Damage is not Always Visually Obvious

One of the main issues with steel finishes such as Galvalume® is that there can be microscopic damage at the hail-dented spot. Over time, there is a possibility that these damaged areas may rust. If your insurance company classifies damage as cosmetic, rather than functional, it may balk at paying for damage and you may need to seek another course of action.

Where is Damage Most Likely to Happen?

Hail impact in the “field” of the roof most often results in cosmetic damage which detracts visually. The more serious functional damage is likely to occur on gabled end trim and eave trim, seams, hip and ridge caps, and where where steel panel edges meet up.

A separation of mating surfaces due to a dent may allow moisture accumulation and leaking. Wind resistance may also be impaired making losing a component in high winds a possibility.

If you know of a needed repair on your metal roofing or if you would like us to represent your case with your insurance company, contact Quality Roofing. We will be glad to help you!

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