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In my part of the world, hail storms are common (1 to 2 per year). When anyone with a construction background comes to look at something at the house, its common for them to take a look at the roof and opine if the insurance company would cover it. This includes folks not actually in the roofing trade.

My 2 rules of thumb:

1) If I can clearly identify it, from ground level (house is single story) I will consider making a claim
2) If I get hail damage to vehicles parked outside, I'll make a claim on the roof.

Its not a scam in that it is so common, its priced into your policy. That said, I don't want to make an excessive number of claims and drive the cost of insurance up, so refer back to my rules of thumb.
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