What Is The Best Roof Material For Hail Protection?

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Hail damaged more than 6.8 million properties in 2021, and resulted in $16.5 billion dollars in insurance claims according to data from Verisk. While hail can occur nearly anywhere, there is a greater risk in the central U.S. and midwest states, with Texas, Indiana, and Ohio topping the list of states that saw the most homes damaged by hail in 2021.

To protect a home from hail damage, the roof material should be high quality and able to withstand as much impact as possible. The strength and integrity of a house is largely dependent on the quality of the roof, so a durable roof is necessary for protecting the home from damage from weather events, especially those that include hail.

Why Is Roof Damage So Concerning?

A roof is a home’s first line of defense against all weather — sun, wind, rain, hail, snow, and ice — as well as impacts from debris. With this in mind, it’s pretty obvious that you don’t want a gaping hole in the roof or missing roofing material, but what about smaller issues, like small holes, wear and tear, or cracks?

Once a roof is damaged by hail, even slightly, it becomes more vulnerable to worse damage with the next hail event. A small crack that may go unnoticed can become worse and worse with each storm and lead to further damage.

Exposure to hail can cause tiles to lose their water-resistance and allow water to seep under the tiles. This can lead to mold and mildew growth as well as water weakening the roofing materials. Not to mention, the water can leak into the home and cause interior damage as well.

How Does Hail Impact Roofing Materials?

Asphalt Shingles

Hail can cause asphalt shingles to crack or lose granules (the mineral granule coating that creates their sandpaper-like texture). Hail can also wear down the adhesive on the self-sealing strips, especially large heavy hail, causing shingles to fall off. If there is damage to the shingles, hail can eventually reach and fracture the fiberglass mat to which the granular layer is attached. If this happens, the roof becomes even more exposed to the elements.

Clay Barrel Tiles

Clay barrel tiles are extremely durable and can last for hundreds of years if properly maintained, but they can become brittle after years of sun and weather exposure. In the event of a hail storm, large hail can crack the tiles, causing unsightly damage and giving moisture the ability to penetrate into the roof itself and eventually into the home.

Cedar Shake

Cedar is a naturally water-resistant material, but that doesn’t mean that it’s waterproof. When cedar shingles are damaged in a hail storm, cracks in the cedar shakes can form or become larger, making it even more susceptible to water damage and mold and mildew growth.

Slate

Slate is a durable roofing material, but it is also prone to flaking and cracking over time. Hail can exacerbate these problems by creating new cracks or worsening existing ones. Repairing a slate roof can be difficult and costly because the slate should be replaced by a specialist.

Metal

Metal roofs can withstand small hail without threat of damage. Large hail, however, can create unsightly dents, though it’s unlikely that it would create cracks or holes as with other materials.

Composite Roof Tiles

Composite roof tiles, especially those with a Class 4 impact rating, are best able to withstand hail storms. Because of their greater durability, you won’t have to worry about cracks that allow moisture into the tiles and underlying material — and even into the interior or the home.

The Best Roof For Hail Protection

For hail prone areas, composite roofing material is the best choice. Brava offers composite roofing with a Class 4 impact rating — the highest impact rating possible. A Class 4 impact rating ensures a roof will maintain its strength and integrity in the face of damaging weather events, like hail, as well as protection against winds up to 110 mph and flying debris.

Composite roofing also lasts longer and is lighter, has greater durability, and is more aesthetically pleasing than traditional clay, cedar, slate, or asphalt roof tiles. They also come in a wide range of colors that can’t be achieved with natural materials or asphalt shingles. This allows you to choose the perfect look while achieving peace of mind and protecting your home.

Contact the experts at Brava today to request a sample and discuss how to best protect your home from damaging hail and other extreme weather.