Metal Roof, Siding Systems; Direct Physical Damage/Loss and Repair Options

February 01, 2017Roofing

At GC3, we get a lot of questions about various aspects of damage to a facility for example, how to evaluate hail damage to roofing systems. Some of the most commonly asked questions are:

  • What is the direct physical damage or loss to cosmetically affected metal when dented by hail?
  • What if metal is not visible from the street view?
  • Is there a need to replace metal panels that are only dented with no risk of a loss in the service life or the performance of the item?
  • What are the repair options?
  • Can dents be removed?
  • Can panels be custom made and installed?
  • What are retrofits? Single-ply and metal on metal overlays?

As we take a broad look at some of these questions, it’s important to keep in mind that there are countless combinations of roofing profiles and finishes for metal panels. So, it is very difficult to try to anticipate the type of impact hail may have.

Claims professionals, building owners, contractors and metal manufacturers are often torn about whether or not to replace a roofing system due to superficial denting of the metal. Just because it looks bad, does this mean it should be replaced? For the most part, everyone agrees, the majority of the time, hail does not cause functional damage – damage that either shortens the serviceability life span or impedes water-shedding capability. The rub is typically over what to do about the appearance of the metal and what the insurance policy provides coverage for.

The following photos show examples of metal damage to roofing and siding that typically accompanies a hail claim. Things can get tricky when it’s clear that extensive damage from other sources such as corrosion, vehicles, etc., are evident, but the shallow dents from hail – the primary reason for the claim – are virtually impossible to see. This can oftentimes be the case and should be taken into consideration when evaluating a hail claim for metal roofing or siding.

Hail Spatter: Once the spatter marks caused by hail weather away, (typically within 6 – 12 months), any hail dents will be virtually impossible to see. The non-weather related damage has been open and obvious long before the hail event occurred.


Vehicle Damage: Here is another photo from an inspection where the building owner wanted all new metal as a result of the hail, but had clearly lived with the other damage, caused by a collision with a vehicle, for an indefinite period of time.


Worn and Faded Paint: Notice that not only had virtually all of the original painted finish weathered away, with no resulting corrosion on the metal, but, there was no sign of corrosion in the dent area even though this is a 16 year-old dent. Often, comments are made that hail dents will eventually lead to corrosion, but this isn’t necessarily the case.


We’ll be covering topics like this and more during GC3’s *Adjustor’s Course on roofing February x – x, 2017.

Also, be sure visit and contribute to our Facebook page, where we’ll be sharing project updates, future education curriculum and more!

For more information, contact Paul Nilles:
515-556-4906 or

To register for classes, contact Curt Buhr:
515.256.4902 or

*This building science program for adjusters is the result of collaboration between GC3, LLC and DMACC.