What to Do After Your Siding Has Been Damaged in a Winter Storm
Though you can ensure your siding’s longevity with a good installation job and proper maintenance, there’s not much you can do to protect your siding from storm damage. It happens.
Nobody likes to wake up to their siding strewn across the yard. But unfortunately, Minnesotan winters are harsh, and storm damage of some sort is a regularity. That’s why Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors is here to help. As a Sauk Rapids team of storm damage specialists, we’ve seen it all!
And because we know how to handle it all, we enjoy helping our clients do the same. Let’s discuss some immediate first-aid for siding that has taken a hit from a wild winter storm.
Once the temperatures have warmed slightly, the winds slowed, and the snow softened, it’s time to put on the winterproof boots and head outside to document the damage. This serves a couple of purposes.
For one, it helps you and your insurance company get on the same page. Even though they may use a third party to take photos to avoid bias, having these photos on-hand will help you make sure that you get everything you want looked at and assessed as it can serve as a helpful reference.
Secondly, photographs will help your storm restoration pro get a look at the damage. While they’ll still do their own inspection (and be quite thorough at it!) it’s a good visual tool that can send your pro right to the specific area of your concerns.
What to Look for In Your Post Damage Inspection
Storms tend to present very specific types of siding damage. It’s helpful to know these things so that your post-storm inspection is quicker.
While you’re walking the perimeter of your home and looking for storm damage, keep your eye out for cracks, dents, holes, and chips.
This kind of damage is just like it sounds: long, horizontal splits in your siding.
In fully wood siding types, cracks can be caused by having to endure one too many freeze-thaw cycles, hence why we don’t recommend entirely wood siding. Try its much stronger cousin, engineered wood siding, instead.
Learn more about it in our siding contractor blog, All you Need to Know About Engineered Wood Siding.
Other siding types still occasionally experience this damage type as a result of poor installation or nasty weather.
Dents & Holes
While these rarely happen in the wintertime, as dents and holes tend to be caused by hail damage, nothing is impossible. Given Minnesota’s aptitude for extreme weather, it’s wise to assess siding for this kind of damage.
Just like with dents and holes, chips tend to be a hail-damage thing. A chip is a bit of siding, usually in half-moon shapes near the edges, that snap off thanks to high impact.
While you’re more likely to notice cracks after a winter storm than any other kind of damage, be on the lookout for chips just in case.
Do You Want to Repair or Replace Damaged Siding?
After assessing the damage on your own, it’s useful to contact siding professionals to do an inspection. They can give you a better idea as to the extent of the damage and what needs to be done to fix it.
There could be underlying damage to the insulation that you aren’t seeing.
In many cases, it’s possible to repair or replace just a small portion of the siding, but for more extensive damage, you might want a total installation.
Check Out Your Policy
Will you receive help from your insurance company to cover this loss? Your policy will tell you.
Before going through the trouble of submitting a claim, it’s helpful to figure out whether that claim has a chance of being approved in the first place. Contacting your insurance company to ask about the hypotheticals is a great place to start. It only takes a few minutes and can save you a massive headache – not to mention a spat with your provider.
Generally speaking, when it comes to siding repairs, most homeowners insurance providers will cover storm damage that isn’t your fault, otherwise known in most insurance policies as an “act of God.”
This, however, generally doesn’t cover any siding damage that might be a result of flooding – an all-too-common occurrence in Minnesota when massive amounts of snow melt.
Dealing With Insurance Adjusters
After you file a claim for your siding damage, your insurance company will send an adjuster to your property to take a look. They’ll investigate the damage and make the decision on if your claim is covered or not.
As friendly as this adjuster may be, it’s critical that you have your potential storm restoration services help you to negotiate with your insurance company and make sure your claim gets approved.
While it’s generally true that winter storm damage is covered in most policies, your storm damage repair company can help protect your interests, as well as lend an additional professional eye to the process.
Find a Storm Damage Pro to Help With Insurance
Not all storm damage repair experts are willing to work with insurance companies for the reasons stated above. It’s critical you find a team that will.
Luckily, you don’t need to go searching – you’ve found your perfect fit with Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors! Our team of siding contractors and storm damage experts would be happy to serve as the go-between for you and your insurance company. We’ll strive to ensure your claim gets coverage.
We understand that storm damage on its own is stressful enough. You shouldn’t have to worry about insurance loopholes or playing phone tag on top of it.
Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors: For All Your MN Siding Needs
With over 50 years of experience repairing siding and home exteriors after winter storms, we are here to help. If you have questions about the extent of the damage or need an estimate on replacements, please reach out to us.
For a powerful team of pros that’s always by your side in a pinch, reach our Sauk Rapids, Minnesota storm damage repair office today at 320-252-9086.