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Why You Should Remove Snow From Your Roof

roofing problems

Snow accumulation on roofs can be annoying, evoking images of weighty burdens and impending disaster. However, the potential consequences extend beyond mere visual concern. We want to shed light on the importance of removing snow from rooftops. By exploring the risk of structural damage and roof collapse associated with snow accumulation, we aim to provide a comprehensive understanding of this critical issue.

Structural damage poses a significant threat when snow remains unattended on roofs for prolonged periods. The excessive weight exerted by accumulated snow can strain building components, leading to compromised integrity and potential collapse. Furthermore, the added stress may cause structural elements to deform or permanently distort over time.

Adopting safe and effective snow removal practices is crucial to address these concerns. At Lanes Contracting, our team of Raleigh roofers offer practical tips for safely managing the snow removal process while minimizing individual and structure risks. 

Potential Structural Damage

The excessive weight of accumulated snow on a roof can lead to structural damage, causing the roof to sag or even collapse. Therefore, it is crucial to regularly inspect roofs for signs of snow-induced structural damage. Regular roof inspections are essential to identify any weaknesses or vulnerabilities that the weight of snow accumulation may exacerbate. These inspections should be conducted by qualified professionals with the necessary expertise and knowledge to identify potential issues. 

Signs of snow-induced structural damage include visible deformities such as sagging or bowing in the roof structure, cracks in walls or ceilings, and doors or windows that become difficult to open or close. Promptly addressing these issues is essential to prevent further damage and ensure the safety and stability of the entire structure.

Risk of Roof Collapse

Contrary to expectations, allowing snow to accumulate on a roof can lead to the risk of collapse. Snow removal techniques are crucial in preventing structural damage caused by excessive snow load. When heavy snow accumulates on a roof, it exerts immense pressure that the structure may not be able to withstand. Roof stress signs include sagging or bending of the roof deck, cracking noises, jammed doors or windows, and interior walls showing signs of bowing. Prompt action is necessary when these indicators are observed. 

Various effective snow removal techniques are available, such as:

  • using specialized rakes or brooms designed for this purpose, 
  • employing heated cables or pads to melt the snow gradually, 
  • or hiring professionals trained in safe and efficient snow removal methods. 

Taking proactive measures to remove snow from rooftops helps mitigate the risk of collapse and ensures the safety and longevity of the structure.

Tips for Safe and Effective Snow Removal

To safely and effectively remove snow from rooftops, our best advice is to consider utilizing specialized tools (such as rakes or brooms that we mentioned above) designed for this purpose. These tools are specifically engineered to handle the weight of the snow without damaging the roof. Snow removal tools enable individuals to reach areas that are difficult to access, ensuring a thorough removal process. They provide a safer alternative compared to climbing onto the roof and manually removing the snow. By using these tools, individuals can prevent potential accidents and injuries. 

Moreover, prompt snow removal helps prevent ice dams from forming on the roof. Ice dams occur when melted snow refreezes at the eaves of a roof and prevents proper drainage. This can lead to water seepage into the house, causing damage to ceilings, walls, insulation, and even electrical systems. Therefore, using appropriate snow removal tools can prevent ice dams and protect their homes from potential water damage.