Hailstorms and Your Commercial Roof

Colorado has a notorious reputation for its nasty hail seasons. Located right in the heart of “hail alley,” the front range averages up to four catastrophic hailstorms every year. Over the last decade, hailstorms have caused over $5 billion in insured damage. Commercial properties account for a significant portion of this damage, often seeing damage to their roof’s integrity. This damage comes in many shapes and forms and can be hard to identify at times.

Here are some signs of damage you can look for after a hailstorm hits your roof:

Dents to Flashings

One of the most common damages a hailstorm can cause is dents or cracks in the flashings. Flashings are the layer of waterproof material found around vents, exhausts, and appliances installed to prevent water from seeping into the gaps created by the connection points. Due to standing vertically, the edges of these flashings can often take quite a beating by a severe hailstorm. When the edges of flashings dent or crack, it can create a gap between the flashing and the appliance. This broken seal allows unwanted moisture to seep into your roof’s base layers, which can lead to leaks, saturated insulation, and other significant damages.

Blistering

Another common damage caused by hailstorms is blistering on the roof’s membrane. Hail can get as big as a softball and make an impact at speeds as high as 100 mph. This dangerously hard impact can dent your roof’s membrane, causing a gap between the membrane plies. This gap can fill with moisture or air, causing it to spread throughout your roof, pulling up the membrane layer, compromising its integrity, and causing accelerated deterioration. This deterioration of your roof’s membrane can accelerate the path to roof failure, leading to a total replacement!

Puncturing

As mentioned previously, hail can reach relatively large sizes and fall incredibly fast. Depending on your roofing type, this impact can outright puncture its surface. In most cases, these damages are quite easy to catch, as they often take the form of a visible hole or slit in the membrane of your roof. These holes should be addressed immediately, as an open gap in your roof’s surface can lead to a large-scale leak quickly, which can lead to damages to the interior of your building.

Hailstorms can come suddenly without warning and cause a multitude of damages to your property. While all these damages can have serious consequences, the effects can be severely mitigated if caught in the early stages. That is why it is crucial to schedule an inspection of your roof as soon as possible after a major hailstorm.

Contact us today to discuss how A-Line Contractors can help you prepare for an incoming hailstorm.

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