If you live in a region prone to hail, you need to consider that when going into storm season. Hail is dangerous — it can cause significant damage to homes, vehicles, property, and it can be physically dangerous for people and animals. It is not something that can be taken lightly or ignored.
Here are five things to consider as the season draws near.
1. Do you have the insurance coverage you need?
Hail can cause significant damage to your home and property. If you live in an area prone to hail storms, you need to make sure you have appropriate insurance coverage to pay for damages caused. You need to check your insurance coverage for both your house and your vehicle. Even if you have a garage to store your car in, if a hail storm hits while you are out driving you may not find somewhere to park undercover. If you have and use an outdoor shed or carport, you need to ensure they are also covered by your insurance in case they get damaged.
2. Is your roof ready for hail season?
Large hail can destroy a roof and damage the wood beneath the shingles. If you live in an area prone to hail storms, you can have hail resistant shingles installed on your house and buildings. While there is a more substantial initial investment with hail resistant shingles, the ongoing costs and upkeep will be less extensive. Additionally, it will alleviate the stress and aggravation that comes with storm damage and trying to file an insurance claim. Resistant shingles still come in plenty of options, so you can customize your home with new shingles just like you usually would when choosing any new roof.
3. Do you have an emergency kit in your car?
If you get stranded somewhere in a hailstorm, you should have an emergency kit in your car with the necessary supplies to get you through a couple of hours. While items may vary, it is good to have bottled water, non-perishable snacks, a womens poncho in case you need to change out of wet clothes quickly, a flashlight that either works on a crank or has extra batteries, an extra car charger for your phone, and flares. The extra clothes and poncho will also be helpful if you need to go somewhere other than straight home due to the severeness of the hailstorm.
4. Do you have emergency supplies in your home?
When large storms hit, it is hard to predict how long you may be stranded at your house or the kind of help you are going to need. You should have a few days worth of water and non-perishable food that does not need to be cooked to eat. You should also have flashlights, batteries, a radio, an extra phone charger, an extra set of clothes for each member fo the family, and pet food if you have a pet. Also, make sure you have extra refills of any medication you take regularly. While you likely won’t need everything in your emergency kit, you’ll be thankful you have it all together if you need to evacuate your home on short notice.
5. What shouldn’t you leave outside?
You have to assume that, during storm season, a hailstorm can hit with little warning. For that reason, you need to be mindful of what items are left outside where they could be damaged if pummeled with hail. Kids’ toys, dog toys, bikes, kayaks, fiberglass boats, and other recreational items can all be destroyed. If you have a garage, you will need it cleared out to store your vehicles, but an outdoor shed can be ideal for storing outdoor items to protect them from hail damage. If you have larger items like a boat, a carport covering can help protect it.