How Can Wind Damage Your Roof?

blue house with a storm-damaged roof

League City, Texas is one of the most weather eventful places in the state. With the hurricanes that come in from the coast, creating tornadoes with high winds, there is a lot of wind damage roof repair that needs to be done. Anyone that has not lived in this area, or any area where the winds are powerful, may wonder, “Can wind damage your roof?” and even, “Can wind tear off a roof?”

The answer to both of those questions is yes, most definitely!  The older and weaker the roof makes it more susceptible of course, but even a newer asphalt shingle roofing can be damaged or ripped off with winds of 45 mph if it hit at the right angle and impacts. At the very least, a homeowner would find shingles have been loosened or tree limbs were broken, tossed on the roof, creating a different type of wind damage. Roof repairs that have a windy session of weather are quite common.

How do I know if my roof has been damaged by wind?   

Wind damage roof repairs are primarily replacing missing shingles or replacing broken shingles.  While to the untrained eye, wind damage roof repairs are not always easily seen.  To an experienced and trained roofing contractor, the wind damage on shingled roof can be determined by any of the following: 

  • Loose/missing shingles
  • Loose/missing nails
  • Shingles with horizontal lines across them. This is where the asphalt granules have been removed by the wind, typically 2” or less below the shingle above. This is indicative of the seal being broken, allowing the shingle to flap in the wind. At this point, it has lost all resistance to moisture and other elements that can compromise a roof. 

Should I get my wind-damaged roof repaired?

If your roof is showing signs of wind damage, roof repair or replacement shouldn’t be second-guessed or postponed. Your first action should be to get an inspection by a professional. Wind damage roof repair recommendation versus replacement will be offered with a written estimate for the work to be done.  You’ll need two copies of this, one for yourself and one for your homeowner’s insurance. 

Wind damage can do more than just impact your home’s appearance. A professional roofing contractor’s inspection will determine if there are any unseen damages that should be addressed. If you choose to not have the recommended repairs or replacements done, you could be putting your home in jeopardy for the following: 

  • ROOF LEAKS: Wind damage can cause gaps or holes in the roofing, resulting in leaks, if not now, soon. If the leaks are unnoticed, the moisture will mildew and create mold, which will begin to spread to any exposed wood and other surfaces. This can cause other components of your home to warp, weakening your home’s structural integrity.
  • WEAKENED SHINGLES: Where the extreme winds can loosen shingles or cause the granules to come off, this leaves the under decking exposed to the elements and speed the aging process of the roof. 
  • UV RAY EXPOSURE: Wind damage roof repairs that aren’t completed will leave the roof exposed to the UV rays and put the rest of the roofing components at exposure. This exposure will shorten the lifespan of your roof. 

When should you replace a wind-damaged roof?

Get wind damage roof repair within the recommended time frame depending on what your roofing contractor tells you.  The roofing contractor is seeing issues with your roof that you may not even realize exist. Delaying the repairs is only leaving the roof exposed and vulnerable, and with too much time passed, you could be getting a new roof instead, at a much higher cost. 

Is roof damage covered by insurance?

Homeowner insurance policies in Texas typically cover wind damage roof repairs or replacement when the damage was caused by any natural circumstances that the homeowner has no control over. This includes hail, high wind, fire, and vandalism. However, if the insurance adjust determines the damage could have been prevented has the homeowner updated the roof prior, or made earlier repairs, the claim could be denied.

close-up of wind-damaged asphalt shingle roofing

From The Tree Tops – Can you protect your roof from wind damage?

In areas like League City, Texas, where hurricanes and high winds are common, placing sheets of plywood over the roof can be an excellent level of protection. Keeping trees cut back is essential in minimizing the need for wind damage roof repairs. 

When you do get a new roof, choose a roofing material that provides a higher level of wind protection, like laminated asphalt shingles. Request the roofing contractor to replace the existing underlayment with a waterproof underlayment. This gives your roof and home an added layer of protection if the shingles are blown off during high winds. And for the sheathing, request they use the thickest material possible. This allows the nails a thicker layer that will keep the shingles in place better.