Dangers of Hail Damage

The Dangers of Hail Damage to Your Home’s Siding in Columbus, Minnesota: What You Need to Know

Your house can encounter many types of weather elements. One of them is hail, which can hit your roof, siding, and other places and possibly cause much damage. The roof is often stronger than the siding. That is why, regardless of the siding material, sometimes it is necessary to replace the siding due to hail damage. 

Siding can be made of vinyl, wood, fiber cement, or aluminum. Regardless of the material, renovation or replacement might be necessary after a natural disaster such as strong winds and hail damage. If the siding is blown off the house, you will have much more work to handle overall. So, having information on the dangers of hail to your home’s roofing and siding can go a long way to keeping the home from being easily damaged in case of a hail storm. 

We will discuss the types of damage that hail can do to your siding, the signs of damage, the risks of ignoring hail damage, and much more. At least you would know better how to deal with siding damage due to hailstones. 

Types of Siding Damage Caused by Hail

Your home insurance policy might just be able to cover the damages caused by hail. It is vital to consult with your insurance company about hail damage siding claims for a better understanding. However, before we can start the repair or replacement process, we first need to understand the types of siding damage you can expect from hail stones. 

We can understand this better if we check what kind of damage to expect with each siding material. Here is a detailed look. 

Vinyl Siding 

Vinyl siding is probably the most common choice for many people because it is cheaper and requires little maintenance. However, cracking or breaking the material is easy whenever hail hits vinyl siding. In addition to such damages, we expect to end up with water damage if the repair is not handled in time. 

Some people have claimed to experience mold growth or rot of the underlying structure because it has been exposed to water. 

Aluminum Siding 

This siding is for someone who wants more durability and flexibility in terms of design. As much as aluminum will be stronger against rain, it will still tend to dent if the impact of hail is consistent.

The larger hailstones often leave deep dents in the siding, making it uneven. The aluminum siding can also warp, affecting the overall alignment and appearance of the exterior house design. 

As much as it does not crack as vinyl, it might still need significant repair and sometimes replacement. 

Wood Siding 

Wood siding will always stand out because of its natural and classic look. However, hail damage on the wood siding can be easily seen even with a quick inspection. Hailstones tend to create cracks and splits into the wood siding. Once the wood is split open, water will easily sip into the underlying structure. The result is rotten siding and possible insect infestation. 

Also, hail impact would damage the paint and other finishes, leading to flaking, peeling, and other imperfections. 

Fiber Cement Siding 

Fiber cement siding damaged by hail is not always a pretty sight. Note that fiber cement siding is quite strong and will handle the impact of hail better than the other materials mentioned above.

However, consistent hail impact can leave the siding with dents, which would need more repairs to make the siding look good once again. 

Common Signs of Hail Damage on Siding

After hailstones have passed, it is always good to thoroughly inspect your home to understand if there is any siding hail damage. Such storm damage necessitates sometimes using your homeowners insurance. Below are the signs to look out for when assessing the house for hail damage. 

Dents, Cracks, or Chips 

Dents, cracks, and chips can easily depreciate the value of your home. It is then best to address them as soon as they happen. 

Expect dents on vinyl, aluminum, fiber cement, or wood. The dents will vary in size and depth, mostly depending on the size of the hail stone and the overall quality of the sidings material. 

Peeling and Bubbling of Paint or Finish

Siding damaged by hail or other severe weather can sometimes experience bubbling paint or finish. If you notice that the siding appears to have bubbling paint, then it is possible that it was a result of hail damage. This would expose the underneath material, thus leading to faster degradation with time. 

Gaps Between Siding Panels 

If the hailstorms are strong, the siding panels can shift, creating gaps. The gaps will let moisture and water sip into the house. The result is that some roofing materials are rusting and rotting, possibly resulting in structural damage. 

As you try to identify hail damage, you may also notice missing pieces of siding. This is quite common if the hailstones are big. Missing or dislodged siding pieces can easily leave your home unprotected against the elements. This should always be addressed immediately to avoid further complications. 

Importance of Thorough Inspection 

You need to have a thorough inspection after a hailstorm. We recommend this for people living in hail-prone areas as sometimes you might not see all the damage. That is why you always need to hire a professional for additional assistance and a comprehensive assessment. 

Once the siding expert with experience and expertise in handling such issues verifies the situation, you can always know when to handle the repairs. Sometimes, you may not be able to see the damage in the hard-to-reach areas. Now that a professional is involved, this can be done correctly. 

Risks of Ignoring Hail Damage

Ignoring hail damage is not a good idea, no matter how small it might appear. Make sure you take it seriously to keep the property in good condition. Below are the possible issues that might arise when ignoring hail damage. 

  • Hail damage can often lead to water infiltration into the underlying structure, which results in mold growth and moisture damage. 
  • Damaged siding can also compromise insulation. This means air can escape, and the HVAC systems must work harder to maintain the house’s internal temperature, which means spending more on energy. 
  • You may also have potential structural damage if the siding issue is not addressed. Water infiltration and exposure to the elements weaken the underlying framing, which can be more expensive if not handled in time. 
  • There is also an increased risk of pests entering your home through the damaged area. You can expect that the cracks will give access to insects, rodents, and critters you would not want in the house. A pest infestation can often be costly to deal with. 

Preventative Measures and Protective Strategies 

If hail damage is not handled in time, it can be costly and disruptive. So, it is best to take preventative measures sometimes to maintain the house aesthetics and generally reduce the amount of time dealing with hail damage. Here is what you can do. 

  • Start by using impact-resistant siding materials that can withstand the force of hailstones.
  • Install protective barriers or hail guards to prevent the hail stones from hitting the vulnerable parts of the house.
  • Trimming the trees and regular landscape maintenance can reduce the risk of hail damage. During a hail storm, the overhanging tree branches can break and fall on the house sidings, damaging them. 
  • If you have any old or weak siding, it might be time to upgrade them to something stronger and better. 

Conclusion 

Hailstorms can often be fierce and unforgiving; for these reasons, you should always remain ready for their effects. If you do not take swift action, sometimes you will have water infiltration and mold growth in your house. We have looked at the signs to watch out for and how best you can address these issues. Take the time to engage professionals so that the siding repairs are always done correctly. 

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