11 Jan How does hail form?
Hail forms when thunderstorm updrafts are strong enough to carry water droplets well above the freezing level. This freezing process forms a hailstone, which can grow as additional water freezes onto it.
Eventually, the hailstone becomes too heavy for the updrafts to support it and the hail falls to the ground.
Hail is a form of solid precipitation. It is distinct from sleet, though the two are often confused for one another. Hail consists of balls or irregular lumps of ice, each of which is called a hailstone. Sleet falls generally in cold weather while hail growth is greatly inhibited at cold temperatures.
Hail is possible within most thunderstorms, and within 2 nautical miles (3.7 km) of the parent storm. Hail formation requires environments of strong, upward motion of air with the parent thunderstorm (similar to tornadoes) and lowered heights of the freezing level. Hail forms near the interiors of continents, while in the tropics, it tends to be confined to high elevations.
There are methods available to detect hail-producing thunderstorms using weather satellites and weather radar imagery. Severe weather warnings are issued for hail when the stones reach a damaging size, as it can cause serious damage to human-made structures and, most commonly, farmers’ crops.
So the next time you hear there is hail expected during a thunderstorm, remember to move you car under cover if you can to reduce your risk of requiring the services a qualified paintless dent repairer.
If you are unlucky and your car is damaged during a hail storm then contact us directly to begin the claim & repair process.