A Sneak Peak at the Best Roof for Hail

In May 2011, the Roofing Industry Committee in Weather Issues Inc. carried out two research programs covering the results of high wind and hail on the Houston roofs. Founded in 1990 as a non-profit agency, the Roofing Industry Committee on Weather Issues, Inc (RICOWI) focused on categorizing and solving issues related with wind damage. It is recently that the RICOWI completed an assessment of nearly 100 DFW area homes to settle on the effects of hail on numerous roofing systems.

Meteorological Records

On May 24, 2011 various storms including large hail passed across North of College Station, TX (Dallas/Fort Worth). As per the National Climate Data Center reports, hail of 2 inches in diameter and larger were reported over the location. Not just this, larger hail of 4 inches in diameter were reported to harm airplanes and close by airfields.

Analysis Method

Skilled and experienced inspection members spotted the affected roofs by appropriately discovering dents and other impact signs, related with the hail. Home owners and other eye witnesses were questioned to authenticate the level of hail impact.

Professional inspection members discovered affected Houston roofs by aptly classifying dents and other signs that were known to be the after effects of hail. Correct data was then assembled and evaluated. The reports mentioned the presence of metrics covering areas, details of the roof construction, pitch, anticipated hailstone size and impact of the hail storm. The severity of the impact was deliberated in a scale of 0 (no damage) to 5 (severe damage and probable leaks).

Investigation Conclusions

  • Low Slope Roofing Structures
    • The aim of the investigation was to verify the differences between the roofing materials rated for the impact resistance along with the ones that were not. It was mentioned in the report that the roof structures that had filming and were steadfastly supported by gravel or stone ballast, performed much better.
  • Asphalt Shingles
    • The asphalt shingles rated as impact resistant as per the report performed better than the ones that were not. Amongst the roofs that were tested, 75% were included in the damage categories of 0, 1 and 2 (the lowest categories). The average damage ratings for the impact resistant roofs, however, were 1.3 whereas, the damage ratings for the non-impact roofs was 2.5. It was also reported that the older roofs faced more damage as compared to the newer ones within the same vicinity because of extra wear and tear.
  • Tile
    • Tile roofing systems were the ones to perform well. Through the hail size was reported to be between 2 and 4 inches, there were hardly any tiles that faced damage. The impact on the tiles was similar to the multiple fractures caused because of a single hailstone impact. Interestingly, the tile roofs older than 12 years displayed no obvious difference in performance generally due to outperforming materials of clay and concrete.
  • Metal Roofs
    • Maximum metal roofing systems were also the ones to perform well. Out of all the metal roofs, only one faced damage where the Houston roofs had smashed sides. None of the metal roofs with elevated, galvanized steel or standing seam showed any signs of damage.
  • End Outcome
    • Hailstone damage was without any difficulty identified by the professionals on numerous assortments of roofing categories. It was mentioned in the data that impact resistant materials were much better than the standard products. Also the roofing systems possessing considerable substrate performed better than the contemporaries.


It shows that the roofing systems that proffer an extensive system of resistance form hail integrates impact resistant materials, a solid substrate backing along with appropriated installation.  If you have any questions about how your Houston roof will hold up against a hail storm, contact Schulte Roofing.