Experiencing a major storm can be a traumatic experience. The aftermath, particularly storm damage to your roof, can leave you in a state of confusion. You’re probably wondering what exactly qualifies as storm damage on a roof. This article will guide you in understanding the different types of storm damage and the most significant signs you need to look for post-storm.

What is Considered Storm Damage on a Roof?

Storm damage to a roof is any damage inflicted by natural weather phenomena like wind, hail, rain, or snow. These elements can compromise A roof’s integrity, making your home’s roof vulnerable to future damage. Here’s how different types of storms contribute to roof damage.

Wind Damage

Wind damage to your roof primarily occurs when high winds exceed the wind speeds your roofing system can withstand. Severe winds can cause curling shingles, missing shingles, or even a wind-damaged roof if the storm is severe enough.

Hail Damage

When a storm brings hail, your asphalt shingles can suffer significant damage. Hail damage to a roof can be challenging to spot as it often results in granule loss which may not be immediately visible.

What is Considered Storm Damage to a Roof

Standing Water

Heavy rain can lead to standing water on your roof, especially if your roofing system has poor drainage or clogged gutters. Over time, this can lead to water damage and dangerous mold due to moisture penetration.


A storm can bring large objects and flying debris, like tree branches and outdoor furniture, damaging your roof. An uprooted tree falling on your roof can cause structural damage and even compromise your roof supports.

9 Signs of Storm Damage

Identifying the signs of storm damage to your roof is crucial for your safety and insurance claims. This awareness can prevent minor damage from escalating into a more severe issue requiring a full roof replacement. Here are nine common signs to watch out for:

Missing Shingles

One of the most common signs of storm damage is missing shingles on roofing systems. Damaging winds and severe storms can rip entire shingles from your roof. If you notice bare patches where shingles once were, contact a local roofer immediately for an assessment and necessary repairs.

Damaged Shingles

Apart from missing shingles, you should also watch out for damaged shingles. Signs of damaged shingles include curling at the edges, buckling, or granule loss. Hail can also leave small dents or bruise-like marks on your shingles. Damaged shingles can leave your roof vulnerable to future storms and potential leaks.

Debris on the Roof

Following a storm, check your roof for any debris. Loose debris, such as broken glass, fallen trees, or uprooted tree branches, can cause severe damage to your roofing system. Not only can this debris create physical damage, but it can also block your roof’s drainage system, leading to standing water and potential leaks.

Interior Water Damage

You may have roof damage if you see signs of water leakage, like peeling paint, discolored spots on your ceiling, or dripping water indoors. Storms can damage your roof and allow rainwater to penetrate your home, causing internal water damage.

Ice Dams

An ice dam is a sign of potential roof damage in colder climates. Ice dams form when the snow melts and then refreezes at the edges of your roof, preventing proper drainage. The trapped water can seep under your shingles and cause significant water damage over time.

Damaged Roofing Material

A visual inspection of your roofing material can reveal signs of storm damage. Look out for visible damage like torn roofing screens, loose weather stripping, or punctures in the roofing material.

Signs of Moisture

Moisture is a silent enemy for many homeowners. If left unchecked, it can cause dangerous mold and structural damage. Signs of moisture penetration include a musty smell, visible mold growth, or dark spots on your ceilings or walls. The best roofing companies will do a thorough inspection beyond the visible signs to determine the damage’s extent.

Structural Damage

In severe storms, large objects like trees or parts of other buildings can strike your home, causing immediate and obvious structural damage to your roof. Such damage requires immediate attention from a roofing contractor.

Clogged Gutters

After a storm, check your gutters. They could be clogged with debris, such as leaves, branches, or shingle granules. Clogged gutters can cause water to back up and pool on your roof, leading to potential leaks or even structural damage.

 How Insurance Companies Assess Storm Damage Before Compensation

After a severe storm, your first step might be to contact your insurance company to report any roof damage. Understanding the process an insurance company follows to assess the damage is critical. Here’s how most insurance companies carry out their assessments.

Contacting the Insurance Company

The process begins when you, the homeowner, contact the insurance company to report damage. The insurance company records the claim and assigns an insurance adjuster to the case. The adjuster’s role is to investigate and evaluate the damage.

Adjuster’s Inspection

The adjuster visits your home to conduct an inspection. During this visit, they evaluate the extent and cause of the damage. The adjuster will take photos, make notes, and sometimes take measurements. They may examine your home’s interior and exterior to determine the damage’s total extent.

It’s crucial to note that you should also have a local roofing contractor present during the adjuster’s visit. The contractor can provide a second opinion and ensure all damage is properly noted. This is especially important because some damage, such as hail damage or granule loss on shingles, can be difficult to spot.

Documentation and Review

The homeowner should also provide documentation to the insurance adjuster. This can include photos or videos of the storm or the immediate aftermath, statements of what was observed during and after the storm, and any quotes or invoices from contractors.

The adjuster reviews all the information collected from the homeowner during the inspection. They will determine whether the damage is covered under your homeowners insurance policy and the compensation amount. This determination takes into account factors like the roof’s age and condition before the storm, the cost of repairs or replacement, and your policy limits and deductible.


If the claim is approved, the insurance company will issue a payment. The payment method can vary. Some insurance companies pay the homeowners directly, while others may pay the roofing contractor that carries out the repairs.


In cases where there is a disagreement between the homeowner and the insurance company about the damage extent or compensation amount, a second insurance adjuster may be called in for another opinion.

It’s worth noting that each insurance company may have slight variations in its process. Be sure to understand your insurance policy and your insurer’s specific process. Your roofing contractor can often be a valuable resource, helping you navigate through the claim process and ensuring you receive a fair assessment.


When your roof has sustained storm damage, acting quickly is crucial. Contact your insurance company to discuss your homeowners insurance policy and the possibility of an insurance claim. Most insurance companies recommend having a roofing contractor or insurance adjuster perform a roof inspection to document the damage.

If you’re uncomfortable doing this yourself, consider hiring a local roofing contractor. They can help with everything from the inspection to filing the insurance claim. While minor damage may seem inconsequential, it can lead to more significant issues, such as moisture penetration and mold growth. So don’t wait until you need a new roof; act on the warning signs today.

Lenox Roofing Solutions is among the best roofers to help you settle storm damage issues, including filing for insurance. The company serves Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Murrells Inlet, Conway, and Surfside Beach, SC, focusing on customer satisfaction.

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