According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), a reported $181 million of insured losses were caused by massive hailstorms in Western Canada in 2020. Last year, an estimated $1 billion of damages were calculated after the intense Calgary hailstorm on June 13th alone. Hailstorm season is here and, unfortunately, that means serious damages to buildings, homes, and cars.
You can take certain steps to protect your home or small building, like covering windows and glass doors. Thankfully, these structures are strong and repairable. However, when it comes to our cars, hailstorm damage can lead to a complete write-off. If you’ve ever experienced a destructive hailstorm in Alberta, you know that a tarp or car cover is not enough. Here are some of our best tips on protecting your car during hail season in Alberta.
1. Rent a self-storage unit in Calgary
When you search for tips on protecting your car from the elements, there are many articles claiming that a car cover is sufficient for protection. However, this is not always the case – especially for classic car enthusiasts. Outside storage with a car cover can trap moisture, which can do more damage than good to a vehicle’s exterior. Furthermore, golf ball-sized hail slamming down at forceful speeds can still result in smashed windows and large dents through the cover.
If you don’t have a garage or extra space to park your car, a self-storage unit is your best bet. Whether it’s your everyday vehicle or you’re looking specifically for classic car storage in Calgary, self-storage units offer many benefits during hail season. Drive-up units protect your valuable asset, and you can access the unit anytime, making it ideal for sudden hailstorm warnings and planning ahead.
2. Be prepared and check the weather forecast
Leave no room for surprises when it comes to hailstorms! Thankfully, advanced technology allows for accurate weather forecasts. You can take advantage of setting up weather alerts on your phone or mobile device, which will warn you of an upcoming storm. Once alerted, you will typically have a couple of hours to prepare. Be sure to give yourself time to store your car in your garage or self-storage unit and arrange for alternate transportation to and from the unit.
While this is an extra step, compare it to the effort and costs associated with filing an insurance claim, writing off your vehicle, finding a new vehicle, and being one of the hundreds waiting on the phone with your insurance provider. The extra 10-20 minutes it takes to properly store your classic car or everyday car before a hailstorm is extremely valuable and can save you from the headache of walking out to see your car badly damaged.
3. Take cover during a hailstorm
No matter how prepared we may be, sometimes we find ourselves trapped in the middle of a storm or far from home as a storm is approaching. If you’re on the road when a hailstorm starts and you only have moments to act, try to find a bridge, gas station, or a parking tower for cover. If none of these are within easy access, take cover on the side of a building to minimize damage to your car.
Mother Nature can be unpredictable. The good news is, there are preventive measures we can take to protect our valuable assets and ensure an enjoyable summer!