3 Ways Insurance Classifies Lightning Damage To A Property
No property is safe from damage caused by lightning.
Lightning strikes can be some of the most destructive forces on earth, but luckily homeowner's insurance covers damages from lightning strikes.
Damage from lightning can be a nightmare - especially when you live in an area prone to lightning storms. One strike of lightning can burn your property, obliterate it, or damage its structure so severely that it becomes uninhabitable. If this happens, what do you need to do to prove the damage has been caused by lightning?
Before we dive into proving your home has been damaged from lightning to an insurer, you need to know the three ways that insurance will classify lightning damage to property.
The 3 ways insurance classifies lightning damage.
Depending on your insurance carrier and the kind of coverage you have will dictate how the insurer will assess property damage from lightning.
Homeowners insurance will classify these 3 types of lightning damages:
- Lightning that directly strikes a home
- Ground surge
- Lightning that strikes down trees
1) When lightning directly strikes the home
A lightning strike is when lightning makes contact with the roof, walls, or other home's structural features. Homeowner's insurance carriers know that a lightning strike will cause severe damage to a home. When lightning directly strikes a home, it will result in a fire or charring. The professionals at SERVPRO have found that this classification of lightning damage is easy to get approved since evidence of the damage from lightning is clear.
Homeowners, these are the common signs to look out for after a home has been struck by lightning:
- Scorch marks/charring on the home's exterior
- Damage to wiring
- Damage to pipes
- Damage to other electrical systems in the home.
- Corrosion caused by rusting due to short-circuiting
The easiest way to recognize a property has been hit by lighting will be scorch marks or charred areas around the exterior walls of homes. The IICRC certified professionals at SERVPRO also recommend inspecting plumbing fixtures for evidence of water leakage after being damaged by electricity surging through them during a lightning strike.
2) When there is a ground surge
A ground surge is when the lightning strikes ground near the property and then creates an electric current that shoots up to the house. Ground surge damage is not severe but may be difficult to prove to homeowners insurance. An insurance adjuster will have to investigate and see if there was lightning near the lightning-damaged property on the specific date and time provided.
3) When lightning strikes down trees on a property
A lightning strike can cause the tree to fall and crush anything in its path. When a home is in the path of a fallen tree caused by lightning, the insurance company will cover the cost to repair or replace all damaged property.
How to prove lightning damage on your property?
As you see, aligning damage can happen to anyone at any time. Whenever a property has had one of the three classified types of lightning damage, the property owner will have to prove that it occurred. The #1 best way to prove damages occurred is through pictures of all damage before storm damage professionals mitigate it.
Another way to prove that lightning damage happened to your property would be to contact a preferred restoration contractor like SERVPRO to come and inspect your damaged property. Insurance preferred vendors know what to look for when a catastrophe damages a property. They use preferred insurance estimating software called Xactimate so that a claim will be quickly approved.
We hope you enjoyed reading this blog post and have learned what insurance classifies as lightning damage and how to prove lightning damage on your property.
Whether it's a house, car, or other personal property that has been affected by lighting, there is no mistaking the destruction caused when struck. The best way to have damages verified would be to take pictures before contacting SERVPRO of North Fulton for storm damage restoration services.
Contact us today for 24/7 services!