By BEM Expert | June 21, 2024

Preparing for a Hurricane: Roof Protection and Navigating Warranty Claims

Preparing for a hurricane is critical for safeguarding your property, especially the roof, one of the most vulnerable parts of any building. This blog will guide you through the essential steps to protect your roof before a storm and navigate warranty claims effectively in the aftermath. We will focus on thorough preparation, working with professionals, and ensuring proper documentation.

Section 1: Preparing Your Roof for a Hurricane

Assessing the Roof

The first step in preparing your roof for hurricane season is to conduct a thorough assessment. Early inspection allows you to identify and address potential issues before they become significant problems during a storm.

Steps for Roof Inspection:

  • Visual Inspection: Check for visible damage, such as loose or missing shingles, cracks, or signs of wear and tear. This initial step helps to quickly identify areas that need immediate attention.
  • Roof System Integrity: Assess the roof’s overall integrity, looking for weak spots in the perimeter details and the seams of the membrane. The goal is to identify and address any areas susceptible to leaks, including checking for loose flashing, gaps in the sealant, and other vulnerabilities that could allow water to penetrate during heavy rains and high winds.
  • Drainage Systems: Ensure gutters, drains, and downspouts are clear and functioning properly to prevent water accumulation. Blocked drainage systems can lead to water pooling on the roof, increasing the risk of leaks and structural damage.

Working with a Professional Roof Consultant: Engage a professional roof consultant to perform a comprehensive inspection. They bring expertise and can identify issues that might be overlooked during a DIY assessment. A consultant can also provide recommendations for necessary improvements and upgrades. Their detailed reports can serve as crucial documentation for both pre-storm preparation and post-storm warranty claims.

Necessary Improvements

Once the assessment is complete, focus on making the necessary improvements to fortify your roof against hurricane damage.

Common Issues to Address:

  • Loose Shingles: Secure or replace loose shingles to prevent them from being ripped off during high winds. This simple step can significantly reduce the risk of water damage and structural issues.
  • Weak Spots: Reinforce weak spots in the roof structure to enhance its durability. This might include adding additional supports or bracing to areas that are prone to flexing or movement.
  • Drainage Problems: Fix any drainage issues to ensure water does not accumulate and cause damage. Proper drainage is critical in preventing water-related issues such as leaks, mold, and rot.
  • Clogged Drains and Scuppers: Ensure that all drains and scuppers on flat commercial roofs are free from debris and functioning correctly. Clogged drainage can lead to water pooling and increased pressure on the roof membrane.
  • Open Seams in the Flashing: Inspect and repair any open seams in the flashing. These can be entry points for water, leading to leaks and potential structural damage.
  • Deteriorating Sealants: Check the sealants at roof penetrations and perimeter flashing. Deteriorating sealants can fail during heavy rains, causing leaks. Reapply or replace sealants where necessary.

Recommended Improvements:

  • Reinforcing Roof Structure: Strengthen the roof structure by adding additional support where needed. This might include installing hurricane straps or clips to secure the roof to the walls of the building, providing additional resistance against high winds.
  • Upgrading Materials: Consider using more durable materials that are better suited to withstand extreme weather conditions. For example, for flat roofs, improve flashing details, and use liquid-applied flashing instead of traditional penetration pockets. Additionally, obsolete roof penetrations that are no longer in use should be removed to minimize potential leak points.
  • Waterproofing: Ensure the roof is properly sealed to prevent water infiltration, which can lead to severe damage. This includes applying high-quality sealants to seams and joints, as well as installing waterproof membranes where needed.

Pre-Storm Documentation

Documenting the condition of your roof before a storm is crucial for both preparation and potential warranty claims.

Effective Documentation:

  • Photos and Videos: Take clear, detailed photos and videos of the roof from multiple angles. Capture any existing damage, as well as areas that have been recently repaired or reinforced. This visual evidence can be invaluable in demonstrating the pre-storm condition of your roof.
  • Professional Reports: Obtain a professional inspection report that outlines the current condition and any improvements made. A detailed report from a certified roof consultant can provide authoritative documentation that supports your claims.
  • Maintenance Records: Keep detailed records of all maintenance and repairs conducted on the roof. These records should include dates, descriptions of the work performed, and the names of the contractors involved. Comprehensive maintenance records can help establish a history of proactive care and proper maintenance.

Summary Recap:

  • Conduct a thorough roof inspection early.
  • Address common issues and make necessary improvements.
  • Document the roof’s condition with photos, videos, and professional reports.

Section 2: Navigating Warranty Claims

Understanding Warranty and Insurance Policies

Navigating warranty claims requires a solid understanding of your warranty and insurance policies. The distinction between these two can sometimes be confusing but is crucial for effectively managing post-storm recovery.

Key Points to Understand:

  • Differences Between Warranties and Insurance: Warranties typically cover defects in materials or workmanship, providing assurance that the roofing system meets certain standards. Insurance, on the other hand, covers damage from external events like storms, including wind, hail, and water damage. Knowing which issues fall under warranty and which are insurance claims can help streamline the process.
  • Terms and Conditions: Familiarize yourself with the specific terms, conditions, and coverage limits of your warranty. Understand the duration of the warranty, what components are covered, and any required maintenance to keep the warranty valid.
  • Exclusions: Be aware of common exclusions, such as damage caused by neglect, improper maintenance, or modifications that void the warranty. Knowing these exclusions can prevent unpleasant surprises when filing a claim.

Steps to Handle Warranty Claims

Handling warranty claims efficiently involves several key steps, ensuring that you receive the support and compensation you are entitled to.

Immediate Actions Post-Storm:

  • Safety First: Ensure the safety of all occupants and secure the property. This may involve evacuating the building if it is unsafe.
  • Initial Assessment: Conduct an initial assessment of the damage. Identify areas that are visibly damaged and prioritize those that need immediate attention.
  • Temporary Repairs: Perform temporary repairs to prevent further damage. This can include covering holes with tarps or using temporary sealants to stop leaks.

Detailed Inspection and Documentation:

  • Professional Inspection: Hire a professional to perform a detailed inspection and document the damage. A thorough inspection should cover all areas of the roof, noting both visible and potential hidden damage.
  • Comprehensive Documentation: Take photos, videos, and obtain a written report from the inspector. This documentation should include detailed descriptions of the damage, locations, and the estimated cost of repairs. Proper documentation is critical for substantiating your claim and expediting the process.

Notifying the Warranty Provider:

  • Timelines: Contact your warranty provider promptly to report the damage. Many warranties have specific timeframes within which you must file a claim following an event.
  • Required Information: Provide all necessary information, including documentation and the professional inspection report. Be prepared to answer questions about the damage, previous maintenance, and any temporary repairs you have made.

Working with Professionals

Engaging professionals can significantly ease the process of handling warranty claims. Their expertise can help navigate the complexities of claims and ensure all necessary steps are followed.

Benefits of Hiring a Roof Consultant:

  • Expert Inspections: Roof consultants provide expert inspections and documentation, ensuring that all damage is accurately assessed and recorded.
  • Streamlined Process: They help streamline the process by coordinating with insurance professionals and warranty providers. This coordination can prevent delays and misunderstandings.
  • Advocacy: Consultants can advocate on your behalf, ensuring that your interests are represented during negotiations with warranty providers and insurers.

Common Challenges and Solutions

Navigating warranty claims can present several challenges, but with the right approach, they can be managed effectively.


  • Disputes Over Coverage: Conflicts regarding what is covered under the warranty. These disputes often arise from differing interpretations of the warranty terms.
  • Documentation Requirements: Extensive documentation requirements can be daunting. Providing comprehensive and accurate documentation is essential for a successful claim.


  • Clear Communication: Maintain clear communication with your warranty provider. Keep detailed records of all interactions, including dates, names, and the content of discussions.
  • Thorough Documentation: Ensure all documentation is comprehensive and detailed. This includes pre-storm conditions, post-storm damage, and all correspondence with the warranty provider.

Featuring Your Warranty Claims Assistance Service

Your company offers specialized services to assist with warranty claims, providing valuable support to property managers, homeowners, and insurance professionals.

Our Services:

  • Comprehensive Inspections: Detailed inspections and documentation, ensuring all damage is identified and properly recorded.
  • Claims Assistance: Help with preparing and submitting warranty claims. Our team is experienced in dealing with various warranty providers and can navigate the complexities on your behalf.
  • Professional Support: Ongoing support throughout the claims process, from initial assessment to final settlement. We ensure that all necessary steps are followed and that you receive the compensation you are entitled to.

Summary Recap:

  • Understand your warranty and insurance policies.
  • Take immediate actions post-storm and document the damage.
  • Hire professionals to assist with inspections and documentation.
  • Utilize your company’s warranty claims assistance services for expert support.


Proactively preparing your roof for hurricanes and efficiently navigating warranty claims are crucial steps in protecting your property. By following the outlined steps and seeking professional assistance, you can ensure your roof withstands the storm, and that any necessary repairs or replacements are properly managed.

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