Abstract The data provided by a meteorological C-band radar have been employed in order to analyze the behavior of 224 storms that occurred on hail days in the provinces of León and Zamora, in the northwest of Spain. A network of more than 700 voluntary observers supplied the necessary information to distinguish hailstorms from storms that did not produce hail precipitation. The observers also reported the size of the hailstones found. Among the variables studied are the maximum reflectivity factors, the vertical developments, and the motion speed of the storm for hailstorms as well as for storms with no hail. The altitude at which the precipitation processes take place inside the storm cell and its average lifetime are the variables that determine the subsequent evolution of hailstorms and no-hail storms in the same day. Furthermore, these variables have been analyzed taking into account the type of storm: unicellular, multicellular or supercellular. Finally, a correlation between the characteristics of the storms and the size of the hailstones registered simultaneously on the ground has been searched for using the RHI detected on the radar exactly at the time of the precipitation.