Think you’re in the clear when it comes to hail storms and hail damage in Virginia? Think again – hail storms have been known to occur in our state at any month in the year. According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Virginia averages about 100 reports of severe hail in a year.

Unfortunately, too many drivers in Virginia assume their risk of hail is minimal, or only worry about it during colder months. Operating under that assumption can lead to serious, costly vehicle hail damage for the unprepared.

Learn when to worry about hail, how to prevent damage and how to fix vehicle hail damage when it happens.

Do You Have To Worry About Hail Damage?

To be safe, Virginia residents should be prepared to deal with the impact of hail and hail storms at any time of year. Avoid car hail damage by knowing the facts about hail and hail-related weather in Virginia. What are the facts?

Severe thunderstorms are common in Virginia. At times, strong updrafts from these storms can move raindrops upward, into higher levels of the atmosphere that are below freezing. These raindrops freeze and grow as more rain comes into contact with the expanding hail, until the hailstones grow heavy enough to fall through the storm’s updraft.

If hail grows to the size of a quarter or more, the National Weather Service (NWS) must issue a severe thunderstorm warning. While not all storm warnings include potential hail fall, it’s wise to prepare for hail damage in the event of any severe storm on the radar.

Preventing Hail Damage In At-Risk Areas

Ideally, prevention is your best bet. Protect your vehicle(s) from car hail damage by parking in your garage whenever possible or investing in a carport for your driveway.

Other prevention options include parking in a public parking garage, parking under an overpass for especially nasty weather or using heavy blankets or tarps to shield your vehicle from harm. Stay on top of the weather and listen to the most recent weather reports to know when to cover your car.

While a typical driver spends $400 on routine car maintenance and repairs, vehicle damage and the subsequent hail damage insurance claim runs as high as $3,000 on average. This is why prevention of such damage is key – protect your vehicle whenever possible.

Traditional Methods Vs. Paintless Dent Repair (PDR)

In the past, vehicle hail damage meant paying for either replacement panels or costly auto body shop conventional repairs. Nowadays, car hail damage can be repaired at a much more economical rate, thanks to paintless dent repair (PDR). Paintless dent repair is faster, more affordable and it is a more practical method that restores vehicle value and retains the original finish and structure of your vehicle.

What type of repair is best for you? Answer these questions to find out.

  • What kind of car insurance policy do you have? Depending on your insurance plan, car hail damage may or may not be covered at all. Paying for both repairs and a loaner vehicle out of pocket is not ideal, which is why you should select a faster and more cost-effective repair method that returns your fixed vehicle to you quickly. In many cases, paintless dent repair costs markedly less and is completed much more quickly than traditional repair methods.
  • Do you want to preserve the factory finish paint and exterior of your car? Conventional dent repair methods involve replacing panels of your car, or pumping the dent full of putty or filler to artificially create a smooth surface, then painting over affected areas. PDR avoids doing either of these things. Instead, technicians access panels from the opposite side and gently push and massage the dented metal back into place. This negates the need for a new panel, filler or new paint. Unless your paint has been scratched, maintaining the factory finish paint is important to retain vehicle value since an intact finish is guaranteed by the manufacturer to last for years.

All in all, your vehicle is a valuable piece of property that should be taken care of and protected in the event of potential hail storms and hail damage. If you live in Virginia, car hail damage needs to be on your radar. Follow the tips and tricks above to prevent hail damage or to repair it after a particularly nasty or unexpected hail storm. If you have questions about fixing vehicle hail damage or navigating the hail damage repair claims process to get started on repairs, contact Dent Shop today for assistance!