Not the member type? Save time and money with our Spark Signature Wash bundles. Not the member type? Save time and money with our Spark Signature Wash bundles.
Spark Car Wash logo

How to Protect a Car From Hail

There are a lot of things our Cleanologists can do, but repairing your car after hail damage is not one of them. No matter how gently we clean your car, how much Spark Ceramic and carnauba wax we put on it, or how non-scratch microfiber towels are; if hail has damaged your car, you’ll need some repair help.


That’s why we’ve created this handy guide to help you protect your car from hail before it happens. By the time you finish reading, you’ll be well-informed about all things hail protection. You’ll know how to protect your car during hail season, the convenience of a weatherproof car cover, the implications of delaying necessary repairs, and the role of comprehensive auto insurance.

It’s time to expect the unexpected and prepare for some of the weirdest weather this world offers. And when the weather passes, come on back to see us at Spark Car Wash.

Understanding Hail Damage & Its Impact

Hail, in its simplest form, is frozen precipitation that forms when strong updrafts in a thunderstorm carry raindrops into extremely cold areas of the atmosphere. As the hailstones fall, they can grow to be quite large, even the size of golf balls or baseballs. 

These natural disasters can cause serious damage to your car, both to the exterior and the interior. Dented roofs, shattered windows, and even totaled vehicles are all possible consequences of a hailstorm. That’s why it’s important to take the steps to protect your car from hail damage. 

Regardless of their size, the impact of these icy projectiles can leave behind a range of issues, from minor cosmetic blemishes to more significant fractures. Your car’s appearance can be marred by dents and dings, resulting in a less-than-pristine exterior.

In addition to cosmetic damage, hail can also impact your car’s value. If you’re looking to sell or trade-in your vehicle, hail damage can significantly decrease its market value. Potential buyers and dealerships might be hesitant to offer the desired price due to your vehicle’s compromised appearance.

What’s more, the cost of repairing hail damage can vary depending on the severity of the damage. Minor hail damage may only require a few dents to be repaired, which can cost a few hundred dollars. However, more severe hail damage, such as cracked or shattered windows, can cost thousands of dollars to repair.

To add to the complexity, during the peak of hail season or after a particularly intense hailstorm, repair shops might be inundated with vehicles needing attention. This increased demand can lead to longer wait times and potentially higher costs due to the surge in demand for repairs.

Protecting Your Car’s Exterior in a Hail Storm 

Protecting your car’s exterior from the wrath of a hailstorm is like preparing for battle – you need a solid game plan. Hailstorms might be unpredictable, but your defenses don’t have to be. Here are some tips to armor up your vehicle during hail season and keep it safe from those icy pellets:

1. Seek Shelter, Always

If there’s one golden rule when it comes to hail protection, it’s to find shelter. The first line of defense against hail damage is parking your car in a garage. If you have a garage at your disposal, consider yourself lucky and use it to its full advantage. Your car will thank you for it later.

2. Embrace Covered Parking

If you’re out and about when a hailstorm is brewing, try to find covered parking areas like gas stations, parking structures, and even carports. They might not be as cozy as your own garage, but they’ll provide temporary protection during hail storms. 

3. Nature’s Shields – Trees and Buildings

Mother Nature sometimes lends a hand too. Trees with dense foliage or tall buildings can act as protective barriers against hail. While they might not be foolproof, they can certainly reduce the intensity of impact and provide a bit of peace of mind.

How Can I Protect My Car From Hail Damage Without a Garage? 

When you don’t have the luxury of a garage to shield your car from hail storms, the challenges of safeguarding your vehicle become even more pronounced. However, with a touch of resourcefulness and strategic planning, you can still take measures to minimize the risk of hail damage.

Here are some practical solutions:

Blankets and DIY Solutions

In the absence of a purpose-built car cover, blankets can serve as a makeshift defense against hail. Thicker blankets or comforters can provide a barrier between the hailstones and your car’s exterior. Secure them with bungee cords or ropes to ensure they stay in place during the storm. 

Similarly, if you have a collection of cardboard boxes or foam padding, placing these over your car’s most vulnerable areas can offer protection.

Car Covers

The second line of defense against hail damage without a garage is a hail-proof car cover. Investing in a high-quality car cover designed specifically for hail protection can be a game-changer. When a hailstorm is on the horizon, simply drape the cover over your vehicle and secure it tightly. This layer of defense can significantly reduce the chances of hail damage.

Do Hail-Proof Car Covers Work?

hail proof car covers - Spark Car Wash

When hailstorms loom large, the promise of hail-proof car covers seems almost too good to be true. However, these innovative shields are designed with precision to provide a layer of protection that goes beyond a mere cover. 

You see, hail-proof or weatherproof car covers are crafted with advanced materials that are durable and flexible. These car covers are often layered with extra padding or foam to act as a shock absorber. 

When hailstones hit the cover, the padding helps distribute the impact force across a wider area, reducing the concentrated force that would otherwise dent or damage your car’s surface. This ingenious design emulates the function of crumple zones found in modern car bodies, effectively dispersing energy and minimizing potential damage.

Now, it’s important to note that not all weatherproof car covers are created equal. Different brands and models offer varying levels of hail protection based on the materials used and the quality of craftsmanship. 

Some car covers may provide excellent protection against smaller hailstones, while others are designed to withstand larger, more aggressive ones. Reading reviews, consulting with experts, and investing in reputable brands can help ensure you select a cover that aligns with your specific needs.

As you consider weatherproof car covers, remember that while they can significantly reduce the risk of hail damage, no solution is foolproof against extreme conditions. Environments with exceptionally large hailstones or highly intense hail storms may still pose challenges. Yet, for the majority of hail situations, these car covers prove to be an effective defense mechanism.

What Is the Cheapest Way to Protect Your Car From Hail?

Certainly, your very own garage or public car shelter stands as the most budget-friendly means of safeguarding your vehicle. However, in situations where these options aren’t available, exploring more effective and dedicated hail protection measures becomes imperative.

As we mentioned above, considering alternatives like DIY solutions such as blankets or cardboard can be a makeshift way to prevent costly car repairs resulting from hail damage. However, it’s important to note that while seeking cost-effective hail protection methods is prudent, car repairs stemming from hail damage can sometimes far exceed the investment in preventive measures. 

Weatherproof car covers and even carport options may seem like expenses, but they pale in comparison to the potential financial repercussions of hail-related damages.

Leveraging Insurance for Hail Protection: Comprehensive Auto Insurance

When it comes to shielding your vehicle from unforeseen events, comprehensive auto insurance stands as a vital protector. Unlike standard policies, this type of car insurance covers damages not caused by you, including hail damage, theft, vandalism, and fire.

In the unfortunate event that your car falls victim to a hailstorm, comprehensive auto insurance can step in to help cover the costs of repairs. The extent of coverage will hinge on your policy, but in most cases, it encompasses the expenses associated with replacing or fixing damaged components – from the roof, hood, and windshield to other body panels, and yes, even your car battery if the hail damage reaches that far.

Keep in mind that when hail damage strikes, time is of the essence. It’s paramount to inform your insurance company promptly after the event occurs. Swift notification facilitates a smoother claims process and ensures that your car repairs are initiated without unnecessary delays. By providing accurate details and documentation, you set the stage for a streamlined resolution that gets your vehicle back on the road swiftly.

Remember, while car covers protect against physical damage, insurance acts as your financial safety net against the unforeseen. 

As you navigate the realm of insurance-supported hail protection, remember that comprehensive auto insurance is a valuable asset that not only safeguards your car’s appearance but also protects your financial investment. With a solid understanding of how comprehensive auto insurance plays a role in hail protection, let’s shift our focus to an avenue that aids in the recovery process after hail damage.

Spark Car Wash – Your Partner in Extreme Weather Protection

hail protection partner - Spark Car Wash

Unlike abrasive cleaning agents, tailored formulas from Spark Car Wash are devoid of acids and fillers. This commitment to safety guarantees a deep, pristine clean as you traverse our car wash tunnel.

Our Comprehensive Offerings for Restoration

  • Ceramic Coating: Our top-tier ceramic coating delivers a mirror-like shine while acting as a shield against UV rays, tree sap, bugs, and more. It’s the epitome of paint protection, preserving your car’s appearance for years to come.
  • Hot Car Wax: Infused with genuine Brazilian carnauba wax – the very essence of hand waxes – our hot car wax imparts a long-lasting shine that sets your car apart from the rest.
  • Rust Inhibitor: Designed to prevent rust, our inhibitor is applied to your car’s underside, particularly beneficial for those residing in colder climates.
  • Rain Repel: Our rain repel is a paint protectant that transforms raindrops into beads, allowing them to effortlessly slide off. Bid farewell to water spots and drive confidently in the rain.

Beyond the initial hurdle of hail protection, our Spark Car Wash stands ready as your ally in comprehensive restoration. We acknowledge that a car’s value extends beyond its exterior, encompassing its longevity and resilience.

Know someone whose car could use a wash? Send them to one of our locations and Join our Team to see the power of Cleanology at work.

Want to know more?

Want to know more? Come see us at one of our Spark locations today! We’re bound to have a car wash location near you and would love to have you!

Join our Neat Nation mailing list for tips and news from your favorite car wash.