If you’ve been in Colorado for longer than a few months, then there’s a good chance that you’ve witnessed the heavy hail that our climate is known for. This is especially true during the spring, and it’s not unheard of to get flash hail storms even during the summer!
This feature of life in Colorado unfortunately lends itself to extensive roof damage. Colorado roofs of all types—from wood shake to asphalt shingles—will eventually incur damage from hail, given enough time. This can be frustrating for property owners who want to get the most out of the roofs they invest in as part of an overall protection strategy for their buildings.
Repairing hail damage on a metal roof is a topic that comes up a lot this time of year. Many Colorado businesses and commercial buildings make use of standing seam, Galvalume, or other metal roofs, and when the hail hits, the resulting dents and dings can be extensive.
So, what can be done to repair hail damage on metal roofs? Also, when can you tell if hail-damaged metal roofing materials need replacement after a heavy hail storm?
In this article, we’re answering these questions. The commercial roofing experts at A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors specialize in metal roof repair, and we’re giving you the fundamental ‘ins and outs’ of metal roof hail damage remediation.
Cosmetic vs. Functional Damage
If a heavy hail storm hits and your building is affected, the very first thing you should do is take full documentation of all the damages. When a metal roof is being evaluated for damage after a hail storm, there are two main categories of dents, dings, or punctures:
- Cosmetic. Cosmetic hail damage to a metal roof is a tricky subject. On the one hand, insurance companies will often argue that this type of damage doesn’t impair the primary function of the roof. On the other hand, the building owner has to deal with a clearly damaged roof, even if the hail damage didn’t result in any punctures.
Determining whether metal roof hail damage is cosmetic or not should be an agreement that is arrived at with the involvement of a professional roofing company like A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors. Only a professional roofer can tell if a hail-damaged metal roof is OK to be left alone, or if it is truly in need of repair or replacement.
- Functional. When locks, seams, flashing, or other metal roofing components are damaged to the point of causing breaches in the metal itself, the damage can be said to be functional.
This kind of metal roof hail damage is almost always covered by most insurance policies, and it typically requires sectional replacements of appropriately gauged, painted, and coated metal.
The Metal Roof Repair Process
Many cosmetic or functional metal roof dents and dings can be repaired through spot-patching.
Here’s how this process typically works:
Step 1: The affected area is cleaned thoroughly
Step 2: A wire brush is used to scuff the affected metal, preparing it for cutting and sealing.
Step 3: The damaged section is cut out of the roof with a minimum, 2” margin on all sides.
Step 4: A color-matched metal ‘patch’ is dropped into place and sealed with a urethane sealant.
Step 5: The treated area is given a final protective coating (if applicable).
Sometimes, there are parts of a damaged metal roof that cannot be easily cut out and patched (i.e., seams or corner sections). In these cases, it is common to use an asphalt-impregnated fabric to ‘mold over’ the damaged area.
If there are too many damaged areas to address with spot-patching, the next alternative would be to completely remove each damaged sheet of metal and replace it with a new one from the manufacturer.
Thankfully, most roofing material manufacturers can quickly ship replacement metal panels and joining hardware from their inventory. The more important factor to consider is who is going to do the repair work!
For Metal Roof Repairs, Trust A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors
For most Coloradoans, conducting metal roof repair in the wake of a hail storm is not a DIY project.
To safely and effectively restore a damaged metal roof, you need a professional roofing contractor that has proven experience working on roofs of this type.
A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors has been repairing and replacing roofs of all kinds since 1993, and we’re available to tackle even the worst hail-damaged metal roof repair job. To schedule an on-site visit with a member of our team, contact us today.