Roof Care in the Winter: What You Should Know
If you live in the northern regions of the US, you’re probably used to ice and snow and all of the issues they can cause. Whether you’re a homeowner, a landlord, or someone otherwise responsible for a building, you’ll need to make sure you keep up to date with repairs and handle problems as soon as they arise — especially if those issues have to do with the roof.
Today, take a look at what potential roof problems you’ll have in the winter, when to handle them yourself, and when to call in an expert roofer to take care of things for you.
If water repeatedly melts and freezes on your roof, it can form a blockade that will keep melted ice and snow from getting into the gutters. The resulting dams can back up water and force it into alternative paths — like under your shingles — that can cause water damage to the interior of your roof. If you don’t handle the ice dams as soon as they pop up, you could easily have water leaking into the house.
To prevent ice dams, you’ll need to keep an eye on where snow tends to build up on your roof. You can install gutter screens to keep debris from building up within the system, but your primary defense will be to remove snow and ice from the roof frequently.
Icicles may not seem like much of a threat since they’re outside the house and visible, but make sure they don’t have a chance to get too large. If you allow the picturesque stalactites and the snow that holds them up to remain, you may have to deal with an avalanche before the winter is over.
The force of falling snow and icicles can rip out shingles or tear off gutters, causing more damage than you may have thought. Even if the roof remains intact, the frozen mass could injure someone walking below at the wrong time or crush plants that grow too close. Keep up with clearing icicles before they get that far, but if they get too big, call in someone to knock them down for you.
Even without the possibility of an avalanche — for example, on a completely flat roof — you shouldn’t leave snow to build up on top of the building all winter long. If your roof has any weak spots or small holes, heavy snow and melting ice will find their ways to cause damage. For best results in the winter, you should take care of any updates or repairs before the winter storms hit.
If you didn’t have the chance to bring in roof-repair experts before the snow began to fall, your priority must be to keep the surface clear of snow to avoid any possible leaks. A roof rake — an instrument resembling a snow shovel — may come in handy for this task since you can use one to remove snow from the top of the building while standing on the ground.
You have other options to keep your roof free of snow if you have the right resources. Look for a box of roof salt, designed to melt the snow without damaging the material, and the sock or tube that goes with it. You can also arrange to heat your roof after a storm using installed electric coils to get rid of ice and snow.
To repair the roof you have or replace it with something better, look no further than Jerry Newman Roofing & Remodeling Inc. Our roofing experts on staff will be happy to help you handle any problems you might have with your roof or exterior surfaces. Get in touch today to see how Jerry Newman Roofing & Remodeling can help your home withstand this winter’s weather.