How to Repair Hail Damage on Siding

Arthur Barnhouse

In most conditions, the siding on your home is designed to hold up well for many years with little to no repairs necessary. A severe hail storm, however, is one thing that has the potential to cause significant damage to siding. Usually, hail that is 0.75 inches or greater in size will create dents in aluminum siding.

If your siding has been damaged by hail, and replacement siding is too expensive, you can attempt to repair the dents yourself. All that’s necessary to fix the siding is time and a willingness to fix each and every noticeable dent.

  1. Locate the largest dents on the siding. You needn’t immediately concern yourself with the smaller dents, as you’ll be able to repair those later with aluminum filler or automotive putty.

  2. Pinpoint the center of the largest dent on the siding. Mark the center with a fine-point marker or pencil.

  3. Insert a 1/8-inch drill bit into the drill. Line the drill bit up with the mark at the center of the dent and drill a small hole into the siding. Drill just deep enough to put a hole into the siding. You should not drill into any of the underlying structure/supports.

  4. Slip a washer onto a 1-inch, self-tapping screw. Gently turn the screw into the hole you drilled using a screwdriver. Do not turn the screw all of the way into the hole. Leave enough of the screw and washer exposed so that you can grasp it with your fingers or a pair of pliers.

  5. Grasp the washer with your fingers and carefully pull until the dent pops out of the siding. If you cannot get a good grip on the washer with your fingers, use a pair of pliers to pull on the screw. Pull carefully, as you do not want to accidentally rip the screw out of the siding.

  6. Remove the screw and washer from the siding. Again, use a screwdriver to remove the screw.

  7. Fill the remaining hole with aluminum filler or automotive putty, both of which can be found at most hardware stores. Use a small plastic applicator to apply the filler to the hole. Allow the filler to dry for the amount of time specified on the label.

  8. Sand the filler with a fine-grit sandpaper (approximately 120-grit). Continue sanding until the filler is smooth and level with the surrounding siding.

  9. Brush a thin coat of paint onto the filler. The paint should, of course, match the paint on the siding. Allow the paint to dry completely and reexamine your work. If you can still see the filler, you’ll need to apply a second coat of paint.

  10. Repeat this process for each of the major dents on your aluminum siding. For the smallest dents, you can simply fill them with aluminum filler, sand and paint.