Snow Removal From Roof.
Heavy snow accumulation will soon have residents of the Greater Grand Rapids area rushing to remove enough snow before their rooftops give way. The demand will be so great that snow removal tools like roof rakes will become winter’s version of a PS3 — a hot commodity flying off of stores shelves.
With the threat of more snow on the horizon, state emergency officials across the region will soon urge people to clear their roofs and decks to minimize the likelihood of structural collapse. To prevent major damage, as well as save big bucks and stress, here’s a breakdown of winter roof protection.
Dangers of Snow-Covered Roofs
Snow can have a great deal of weight with it, and the weight will increase when rain, ice and sleet are added to it. When you get 24” of snow build up on a standard roof that can be the equivalent of 38,000 lbs of extra weight sitting on top of your home.
Making matters even worse is the melting of this snow which can cause water seepage. Water seepage can rot roofs; destroy insulation, flood attics, ruin gutters and damage the interior of your home.
Before attempting to remove snow from your roof, please be advised that clearing roofs can be a dangerous task. Think twice before you jump on the roof with a shovel or snow blower in hand. Being on a roof is a dangerous task in the best of conditions, add a couple feet of snow and ice and it could lead to disaster for the homeowner.
Warning Signs That a Roof Is About to Collapse
A sagging roof is a sure sign that the roof is in immediate danger of collapse. Other signs are doors that won’t open or shut properly, windows that are hard to open or shut, these could be signs that the roof has started to sag.
Water spots on the ceiling could be a sign that the roof is leaking and in danger of collapse also.
How Do You Remove Snow from the Roof?
Once snow buildup occurs or ice dams have formed, using a roof rake is the best option that doesn’t require spending cash on a professional. The roof rake has an extended handle, which enables you to pull snow off the first couple of feet of the roof — from the safety of the ground.
To remove snow and ice, start from the edge and work your way into the roof using downward strokes. Try to scrape the snow along the bottom of the roof, shaving two or three inches off. There’s no need to scrape the roof entirely clean, as this will risk damage to your roof shingles or other roof covering.
Call a roof cleaning professional.
If you think the amount of snow on your roof is a hazard and you do not want to tackle the job yourself call a professional roof cleaning company.
Unless you can reach your roof from the ground, clearing snow from your roof can be a very dangerous undertaking. Note: Using a ladder is extremely dangerous in cold weather because the rungs can quickly turn icy, causing you to slip or fall.
How to Prevent Ice Damage
Get the snow off the roof before it can cause ice dams.
Once snow builds up on the roof, heat that escapes from the house causes the snow to melt, the melted snow runs down the roof and freezes, as more snow melts the water is forced to travel under the shingles and then it leaks in the house. Add insulation to attic floors.
A well-insulated attic and well-ventilated roof will prevent heat from escaping, which in turn will protect the roof from conditions that cause ice dams.