While you might think of snow as light and fluffy, it can accumulate quickly during winter storms and pose a serious risk to the stability of your home or business’s roof. When snow becomes heavy and below-freezing temperatures prevent snowmelt, your roof may no longer be able to handle the weight. Knowing the risks can help you preserve your roof’s integrity and keep those who live or work inside the building safe.
1. Snow Weight Can Harm Older Roofs
If you have an older roof, then a snow load may have a more rapid effect on it. Areas with missing shingles or damaged flashing are especially vulnerable and may result in serious leaks. Having your roof repaired or inspected before the winter may prevent this from happening.
2. Wet Snow Is Heavier
Not all snow is created equal, and when wet, heavy snow falls, it can accumulate into a heavier load faster than lighter types of snow. These heavier loads may also become packed and slower to melt, which can affect the roofing materials. Enlisting roof snow removal plans ahead of time can offer you peace of mind when heavy, wet snow starts to fall.
3. Development of Ice Dams
Your home’s gutters are key when it comes to allowing melted snow to drain off your roof, but when the melted snow freezes again before the draining occurs, this creates ice dams along the edges of the roof. When this occurs, the roof fails to drain into the gutters and may eventually damage the roof’s shingles and cause moisture to leak into your attic.
While not all snow loads are harmful to your roof, some can cause leaks or even collapse, especially if it is already damaged or needs replacing. Understanding how snow can affect your roof and having a plan in place to remove harmful loads can protect your property and keep those who live or work in the building safe from harm.