Storm damage is often a secret culprit of major home damage. If a homeowner experiences roof damage, dented siding, flooding, or even A/C malfunction, weather-related issues may be to blame. Storm devastation is not restricted to certain states or cities. The impact of high winds and heavy rain can decrease a home’s value. Insurance can cover the cost of damage, but professionals will need to know several key factors. To better understand the underlying cause of destruction, accurately identifying storm damage can save time, effort, and money.
Identifying the Key Factors
Home repairs are necessary for multiple reasons. If severe damages occur after a weather-related event, insurance may cover the cost.
The 5 main identifying factors include:
- Missing or loose shingles
- Granule loss
- Fallen debris
- Collateral damage
- Internal leaks
Time Is of the Essence
Roofing issues will need to be fixed as soon as possible. Missing or loose shingles are often a sign of heavy wind from storm damage. If shingles are no longer intact, this can cause leaks and significant damage to the interior. Rotting wood and open gaps can cause health issues from potential mold and rodents.
Granule loss occurs with moderate to severe roof deterioration. While many people assume granules may be a decorative choice for roofing material, it actually increases fire resistance. By adding an additional layer of protection, houses are less likely to experience wear and tear from natural causes.
Roofing issues including clogged gutters should be fixed as fast as possible to prevent future leaks. Water damage not only causes mold, but it can damage any wood furnishings or floors inside the home.
Fallen Debris Is a Sign of Strong Wind
Fallen debris such as snapped trees and heavy branches is frequently a sign of strong winds. Depending on the storm, winds can gust through yards at 60MPH. When this occurs, fallen trees can cause roofs to collapse.
One storm alone can cause major damage to a property. Combined with clogged gutters and missing shingles, this is usually a clear indication of storm damage.
What Does Collateral Damage Look Like?
Damage that is not associated with the roof is considered collateral damage. This can include issues with the HVAC system, vents, gutters, windows, and fence spatter. Some of these problems can affect personal comfort as well as home security.
Excess debris from strong winds can collect inside HVAC units. The impact of this affects indoor air quality as well as temperature. Heavy debris restricts airflow from the unit which frequently causes ventilation systems to work harder. One way to tell if an HVAC system is working correctly is by paying attention to the monthly electric bill. Higher bills indicate an increase in the effort of a heating or cooling system.
Collateral damage can also shatter windows and cause discoloration in fences. Property damage affects the security of a home when it appears vulnerable. Some of these issues can be easily fixed without much cost.
Storm Damage or Something Else?
Home damage can occur any time during the year. Rodents, lack of maintenance, and structural damage, can all be caused by neglect. To truly identify storm damage, a thorough assessment of the house should be conducted after a major storm. Clogged gutters, missing shingles, discoloration, and an increase in the electric bill, all point to significant storm damage.