Does Your Roof Have Storm Damage?

The Southwest United States is all about extremes — extreme beauty, extreme terrain and most important, extreme weather. Rain, wind and hail can wreak havoc on your roofing materials. For example, most shingle roofs carry a wind resistance rating of 60 miles per hour. Severe summer storms can easily send winds gusting up to 75 miles per hour or higher, which means your roof could be at risk every time a bad storm blows through.

And while there is no such thing as a totally hail-proof roof, there are hail-RESISTANT roofs. These products have Class 1 through Class 4 hail-resistance ratings, 4 being the highest. The ratings are given by taking a steel ball and dropping it from a pre-determined height and measuring the damage the roof has sustained. The American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) performs the tests.

Any time you lose roofing material or it is cracked or damaged, there is a good chance that rain will work its way under the outer layer of your roofing material and begin eating away at the underlayment and waterproof layer.

That is why it is critical to check your roof after every bad storm. You should understand that just walking on a roof can cause damage, and can be dangerous for people not used to heights. It is best to use a pair of binoculars to examine the roof for wind, hail or water damage. When in doubt, call in a professional roofer to examine the roof for you.

Things to check for:

  • Missing Materials — examine the roof for missing roof materials (whether it is tile, shingle, shake or foam roofing)
  • Missing Flashing — check for missing flashing, which are metal strips that protect the edges of your roof and any place the roof is penetrated by a vent stack, AC or heating unit, skylight, chimney, etc.
  • Missing Sealant — check the seals around any penetrations in your roof (skylights, soffits, chimneys, etc.)
  • Water Marks — check for dark spots where water might be pooling, and also check your attic and home for any suspicious stains.

There are some general maintenance things you should do routinely to keep your roof in tip-top shape. First, be sure to clean the gutters and downspouts of debris, especially after a storm. Check to make sure the gutter brackets are securely in place and check to make sure that water drains properly. You can do this by running a hose into the gutter and watching the drain. Next, summer rains encourage native and non-native trees to add plenty of growth. Overhanging branches can scour against roof surfaces, and especially on asphalt surface, scrape away the protective granules. Take the time to trim tree limbs that are dangerously close to the roof to prevent future damage.

If you have any concerns about your roof after a storm, contact us at Roofing Southwest. With 40 years in the roofing business, our professionals have a combined 150 years experience when working on your roof. We are able to handle small and large jobs, both commercial and residential, and are licensed, bonded, and insured to conduct business in Arizona, Nevada, California, New Mexico and Texas.


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