Storms can damage an asphalt roof in many ways. The type of damage to inspect for depends on the type of storm that was experienced.
Hail storms can blow in quickly and be over in just a few minutes, but the damage caused in that short time period can be devastating to your roof. Even worse, hail damage isn't always obvious unless you know exactly what to look for.
Asphalt shingles have a layer of gravel on the very surface, which is dislodged from damaging hail strikes. The roof may at first look whole until you notice smooth or shiny spots on the shingles where the gravel was knocked loose. The loss of gravel combined with the compression damage on the shingle from the hail will eventually lead to leaks.
More severe hail storms can actually crack or tear the shingles, a much more obvious form of damage. Flashing, vents, and other rooftop items can also be cracked or dented badly. Replacement of the damaged shingles and other roofing materials is necessary to avoid water incursion.
Wind can cause a lot of damage relatively quickly, as well. Older roofs are often more prone to wind damage, but even a new roof can be damaged depending on the circumstances.
Uplift can affect just a few shingles or it may damage a large section of the roof. Individual shingles may look ruffled or curled due to the wind blowing them up, which means they are likely cracked and water can make its way beneath them. Section uplift is when the wind lifts up an entire part of the roof structure, including some of the decking beneath the shingles, from wind pushing up from under the eaves.
Sometimes wind tears shingles right off the roof. You may find broken bits of shingle on the ground, along with a lot of gravel that was dislodged from shingle surfaces on the roof. Wind can tear off a shingle completely or partially, but both types of damage will require replacement of the affected shingle.
Snow and Ice
Unlike wind and hail, snow and ice damage doesn't happen suddenly in most cases. Instead, the damage is a result of snow and ice sitting on the roof for a longer period.
The most common type of snow and ice damage is the ice dam. An obstruction on the roof, such as a clogged gutter, prevents the melting water from flowing off the roof properly. Instead, it backflows underneath a shingle and then refreezes and lifts the shingle up so more water can seep underneath.
Accumulated snow and ice can become too heavy for a roof. You may notice that the roof is bowing. Creaks and pops from the roof may also be audible. Weight damage can be dangerous, as it may lead to a roof collapse, so call a roofer immediately if you have concerns.
Contact a roofing company for any storm damage needs.