Check the hail itself first, once it’s safe to go outside. Small pieces of hail probably won’t faze a solid roof, but anything bigger than an inch is likely to cause trouble. Some experts recommend saving a few samples of larger hailstones in your freezer, so you can provide evidence to the insurance company.
Walk around your house and check for damaged bits of shingle. This can include bits as small as granules or as large as whole shingles. As you walk, check to see if siding or patio furniture has been damaged, as well as trees and shrubs. Damaged air conditioning units, cars or stripped foliage often indicate that your roof has been affected, as well. Damage to gutters, vents, other metal structures can be easy to spot from the ground, so make sure to inspect them.
If you see these signs of damage, take out a pair of binoculars to inspect the roof or carefully climb a ladder to peek at the roof without stepping on it. Hail leaves a random-looking pattern of different-sized craters. Sometimes they look like shiny dark areas where granules have been knocked loose. This causes shingles to weather much more quickly, and probably will require you to look into home roofing options.
You can also check your home from the attic for hail damage. Look for sunlight shining through the boards, water damage, or active leaks. Hail damage is often cosmetic, not affecting the life of roof shingles, but more severe damage can cause wood splitting, granule loss and shingle fracture, and can therefore require roofing repair.
While you’re performing your checks, be sure to snap several pictures for your insurance adjuster, even if you’re not sure you’re looking at serious damage. You should also keep a record of weather reports so you can prove the hail happened when filing a claim and contacting residential roofing companies.
If you’re even a little bit concerned about hail damage, check out home roofing options in your area. Even if your roof is cleared after a roofing maintenance inspection, it’s always worth checking before damages have a chance to worsen. If hail damage is a regular issue, ask your roofing company about hail-resistant home roofing options.