Hail Damage vs Blistering

Let’s talk about hail damage vs blistering! The difference between hail damage and blistering is subtle, but could be the limiting factor in an approved or denied claim. So, what is blistering of a roof shingle? Shingle blistering occurs through a number of scenarios:

Scenario 1:

There is poor ventilation in the attic. The exposure from the sun combines with the heat in the attic to quite literally, boil the shingle. The bubbles in the asphalt will eventually burst, throwing grit off of a portion of the shingle. Our pictures better illustrate how this differs from hail damage.

Scenario 2:

Surprisingly, the sap released from trees can weaken the asphalt which invites blistering in the future.

Similar to tree sap, adhesives used to install shingles can have a similar effect when applied in excessive quantities. You typically need only about a finger-tip size amount to properly adhere the shingle. Adhesives with solvents in them can be particularly troublesome to the health of your shingles. You should always read the product descriptions or ask for help when purchasing anything for home repairs.

Scenario 3:

Roofing shingles installed while wet, or moisture in the decking during installation can cause shingle blistering. Make sure you go with a quality roofer who you trust to properly store the shingles prior to installation!

Shingle blisters aren’t covered by insurance and will be smaller in size. Always have a professional roofing expert inspect your home before meeting with an insurance adjuster!

Shingle Blistering

Hail hits still have granules in the center of the impact and can resemble the shape of the hail which struck the property. Juxtaposing this to a blister, we see very steep edges and an empty center.

Hail Damage

Typical hail hits exhibit a loss of granules from the impact. This interaction between the hail and shingle accelerates wear and tear of the roof. The shingles can also crack from harder collisions, instantly reducing the effectiveness of your roof against weather.

If you notice larger portions of the roof with roof damage specifically exhibiting shingle blistering, it indicates improperly installed shingles. At this point, you should contact your preferred roofer. Replacement of the shingles is necessary, and likely the flashing, underlayment, or ice & water barrier as well.

Check out our guide on what the insurance claims process looks like if you are considering filing a claim.


  1. Mia Evans says:

    Thanks for helping me understand that improperly installed shingles can lead to blistering, so we need to make sure to hire quality roofers. I will keep that in mind to prevent costly roof repairs in the future now that I will have my dream house constructed starting this year. I am searching for various contractors now and I hope to be able to hire their services as soon as I know they are trustworthy.

  2. Great guide that you shouldn’t ignore any type of damage caused by hail around your property. I never knew that this is serious enough to damage the structural integrity of your roofing system. This information could be useful for my friend who plans to move to the countryside.

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