Winter songs remind us that it’s almost time for Santa’s sleigh on your roof, but what about the more concerning aspects – the ever-dreaded snow. We love to see the snow gracing our lawns and bringing us a white holiday, but when it starts to pile up on our roofs, it brings serious concerns. That begs the questions: what should seriously worry you? And what type of roof winter care should you be considering?
Common Problems Caused by Snow
The snow brings with it some major concerns for your roof. Perhaps the most concerning ones are:
- Roof collapsing from the weight
- Ice Damming
- Gutter Floods
- Leaking or further damage
Read below for more info about each.
Okay, we know this is the scariest option, so we thought we’d get it out of the way first. The weight of the snow could, in theory, cause your roof to collapse. Of course, this is terrifying and certainly the worst-case scenario, but we’re here to assure you that this is fairly unlikely. Most roofs are built to withstand up to 20 pounds per square foot of weight, and an adequate contractor will ensure that your roof meets all building codes. With proper winter roof care, you can avoid this catastrophic possibility altogether.
Ice Damming is caused by a lack of ventilation that leads to the snow on your roof melting. When the ice melts, it creates a small wall on the edge of the roof, keeping melting snow from draining off and holding the water on your roof. This can cause significant leaks or water damage to the exterior of the shingles on your roof.
Gutter Floods are similar to ice damming in that they prevent water from effectively leaving the roof. In this scenario, the freezing temperatures turn water and slush to solid ice, preventing more water from leaving the roof. As previously discussed, this has serious consequences for the interior and exterior of your roof.
Leaking or Further Damage
As you read many of the above concerns, you may have noticed that they end with the consequences of leaking or exterior water damage. The concentration of heavy snow leads to inevitable water as temperatures rise from inside your house and melt the snow. Proper winter roof care will help to minimize the potential for damage.
Winter Roof Care to Consider:
- Use a snow rake regularly once the snow starts falling
- Remove debris from your roof
- Contact an expert in advance
DON’T Shovel Snow off Your Roof, DO Rake Snow
Shoveling snow can be dangerous for you, and be less than effective in removing the snow. Instead, get a snow rake. Your snow rake should protect from scraping the roof by using small rollers or bumpers at the end of the prongs, or if necessary, use a plastic rake instead of a metal one. Start at the edge of your roof and work towards the middle. Though it may seem intuitive to want to completely clear the roof of snow, it’s actually better to leave a few inches so that you run no risk of damaging the shingles.
Remove Debris from Your Roof Before It Snows
Many roofing problems are caused or compounded when snow is trapped on the roof, leading to extensive water damage. One crucial piece of roof winter care is prevention before the snow even begins to fall. Ensure your roof is cleaned and you have maintained it regularly. Similarly, gutters should also be cleaned to prevent gutter floods and ice damming if possible.
Contact an Expert
We get it, sometimes those little pieces of roof winter care aren’t enough to make you feel secure about the impending winter. If you’re wondering if it’s time to replace your roof altogether, it’s time to call in an expert. If you’re in the Tennessee or Florida region, Model City Roofing would love to help. Contact us here.