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When severe storms hit, you’re bound to see a fair deal of damage in isolated pockets. The April 9, 2015, storm in Ohio had such clusters of extreme wallops. Luckily, the pockets were smaller in size than in average spring storms, but they still brought the “killer combo”— the one-two punch of wind and hail that can cause older roofs (12+ years) to fail.

The Roof Damage in Cincinnati Isn’t Exactly Where You Might Expect

In the few weeks since the storm hit, we’ve seen more damage on the outskirts of where the heaviest hail hit. The wind speed from Kentucky to northern Ohio averaged 48 miles per hour during the brunt of the storm, but pockets saw speeds topple 70 mph. That’s not in and of itself all that bad, but when hail joins the mix, it gets volatile.

In our line of work, we know the recipe for disaster – and this storm made and served it. Winds of 60+ mph plus hailstones in excess of 1 inch make a mess of aging roofs. When shingles lift and get hit by hail of this size, there is a good deal of pocking (granule loss), cracking and knock-offs caused by the wind or the combination of wind and hail.

Most homeowners aren’t aware of the amount of damage their houses have sustained until a future rainstorm or even melting snow has occurred. By then, it’s too late!

Hail & Wind damage from April storm in Indian Hills, Ohio

This is a newer roof in the Indian Hills community that was on the outer edge of the large hail area but saw winds nearing 60 mph. You can see a large hail pock and a few strips that lifted, warped and tore. Our roof inspectors have seen plenty of this as well as missing ridge caps — the roof’s front line of defense.

Wind Damage Exmaple from April 2015 storm in Cincinnati

A few older roofs in the Madeira, Delhi and Hebron communities have also shown some classic heavy cracks like the one in this photograph taken by a Roofing Annex inspector. The roof started noticeably leaking weeks later after some light rain.

What Does One Do After a Storm Like This?

Maybe you don’t see a problem or maybe you do. Peace of mind is the issue in both cases. Early spring and late fall are the most dangerous times for roof damage in Cincinnati — damage that needs to be adressed. Self-diagnosing is difficult unless you see obvious shingle or leak damage. One can’t see much better standing at the top of a ladder than from the ground.

For those who don’t see damage, play it safe and call a pro if you can answer yes to more than three of these questions:

  • To your knowledge, were hailstones larger than 1 inch wide?
  • To your knowledge, was the wind crashing at speeds in excess of 50 miles per hour?
  • Have you seen roofers on your block or roofing contractor yard signs near your home?
  • Have there been any roofers knocking on doors in your neighborhood?
  • Is your roof older than 12 years?

If you need help, follow these steps:

  1. Get your insurance information ready, but don’t contact your insurer immediately. The insurer will want a “preferred” contractor to come out. These companies may not meet the criteria for providing expert storm damage services and may have the insurer’s interests at heart.
  2. Call a reputable roofing contractor operating in the Cincinnati area, such as Roofing Annex. Look for a Better Business Bureau rating and other credentials.
  3. Be sure that the contractor offers storm damage services beyond emergency repairs.
  4. Make sure your contractor’s inspection, consultation and estimates are free of charge. This roots out scam artists.
  5. Be sure to get any immediate threats patched or tarped by the roofer even if the weather forecast is good.

If you live near any of the following Ohio or Kentucky communities and need help or peace of mind, call the experts at Roofing Annex:

  • Blue Ash, OH  –  Wind Damage
  • Cincinnati, OH  – Hail and Wind Damage
  • Covedale, OH – Hail and Wind Damage
  • Hebron, KY – Hail and Wind Damage
  • Indian Hill, OH – Hail and Wind Damage
  • Lebanon, OH – Wind Damage
  • Madeira, OH – Hail and Wind Damage
  • Delhi, OH – Hail and Wind


Schedule an inspection, request a quote, or call us today!


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