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Residential Metal Roofing: Is It Right for Me?

When the contractor delivered the sad news that my roof needed replacing, that led to a discussion of material choices. I was surprised to hear that metal roofing was an option. Sure, it was fine for commercial buildings, but a home? My contractor told me that metal is used for homes more than people realize. The panels can be designed to look like just about any type of roofing you can imagine. After looking at some samples and finding out about the long life of metal roofs, I decided to give it a try. Fifteen years later, my roof is still in great shape. If you are facing a roof replacement in the near future, let me tell you more about metal roofing. I'm betting that you'll decide this solution is right for your home.

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Residential Metal Roofing: Is It Right for Me?

How To Identify Hail Damage To An Asphalt Roof

by Kelly Murphy

Identifying hail damage on your patio furniture or car is usually pretty straightforward. After all, the round dents left in the metal after a storm are easy to spot. However, how can you tell if your asphalt roof has sustained any hail damage? You need to know if your roof has any hail damage so that you can make any roofing repairs needed to keep your roof in good condition. After all, you don't want a problem that was easy to fix to cause structural damage and/or leaks. Also, keep in mind that your home insurance policy might cover hail damage, so you'll want to assess the situation, using these tips, shortly after the storm passes.

Hail Size

The smaller the hail is, the harder it will be to spot damage on an asphalt roof. In fact, if the hail was an inch or less in diameter -- about the size of a quarter -- you should consider calling a licensed roofing contractor to inspect the roof for you. While small-sized hail can cause damage, it's difficult to spot if you don't know what to look for. Hail that is larger than an inch in diameter causes more damage than smaller hail, so the damage is easier to spot. If you've had a hail storm that produced hail that's more than two inches in diameter, there is a good chance that the hail has damaged your roof. So, if you haven't noticed any damage yourself, you should have your roof professionally inspected.

Looking for Damage

Hail damage isn't always easy to spot right away, but you can avoid wasting your time by inspecting the most obvious points of damage on your roof first and ending your inspection in areas that may be less obvious.

  1. Inspect any soft metal on your roof first by looking for noticeable dents. This includes: vents, exhaust caps, flashing, metal surrounding your skylight, and metal valleys.
  2. Inspect the ridges of your roof and the shingles for circular cracks and/or missing granules. Circular cracking is the easiest form of hail damage to find. Simply look for cracks in the shingles or along the ridges that are a full circle or half-moon shape. To find missing granules, look for areas that have the black paper underneath the granules exposed. If hail caused the missing granules, the paper should look fresh -- not like it's been exposed to the sun for a long time.
  3. Inspect the shingles for bruising by running your hand along the shingle feeling for any dimples or indentations. If you find an indentation, lightly press your thumb into the dent to see if it feels soft and spongy. If it does, it's likely that hail has bruised the shingle, and it needs to be replaced.

Other Places to Inspect

There are also several other things you can look for that might indicate that the hail storm damaged your roof.

  • Inspect the inside of your gutters for loose granules.
  • Walk the perimeter of your home looking for loose granules.
  • Check you air conditioning unit for any dents. If it's damaged, your roof could have damage too.

For more information, contact a roofing repair company in your area.