Snow On Your Roof: The Good, The Bad, and The Dangerous

The first snowfall of the season is a magical moment. The world outside becomes soft and white, and the sun glistens off of the fresh snow, creating a picturesque winter wonderland. The truth, however, is that too much snow on your roof can be a major safety hazard.

For many people in the colder regions of the country the magic dies quickly as the snow piles up and harsh conditions make day-to-day living a little more difficult. Fortunately, there are precautions you can take to keep your home secure during and after a heavy snowstorm.

The Surprising Benefits of a Snowy Roof

Believe it or not, snow on your roof isn’t always a bad thing. In fact, there are some advantages to having a light layer of snow on top of your home, including:

  • When snowflakes gather on top of each other, air pockets form, causing sound to become muffled. As a result, you might find that your home is just a little bit quieter when it snows.
  • A layer of snow can act as a form of insulation, protecting your home from losing heat through the attic.
  • Melting snow can indicate if you are losing heat through your roof. If you have gaps and cracks in your roof, warm air will rise and escape, causing the snow to melt.

Warning Signs of an Impending Disaster

On the other hand, heavy, wet snow that sits on your roof can be a major hazard. If you notice any of the following warning signs, evacuate your home immediately and call 911 because your roof may be in danger of collapsing.

  • Sagging ceiling
  • Major water leaks
  • Cracks in walls
  • Loud cracking noises

If you notice any minor signs of damage, call a roof service that specializes in snow removal before the problem gets any worse.

Whether it is wind, rain, snow, or fire, storm damage can be expensive to fix. On average, wind damage costs around $5,757 to fix, while fire and smoke damage can cost roughly $4,172. Heavy snow accumulation on your roof can lead to severe water damage, which generally leads to roof repair costs of around $2,386. Flat roofs are particularly vulnerable because the snow is not able to slide off, causing the pile to grow and increase in weight.

If you are concerned about the snow on your roof, or you are experiencing storm damage because of heavy snow accumulation, call your local roofing company for assistance.

When should I worry about snow on my roof?

Calculate the weight of the snow on your roof.
Packed snow, however, weighs more: two feet or more of old snow is enough to exceed weight limits. Old snow and new snow combined can easily exceed load capacity. Just two feet of each could collapse a roof. And don’t forget to add ice to the equation.

How to get rid of the Snow on a Roof

Wondering how to remove the snow from your roof? Here are some foolproof methods:

  • Install heat cables on the edge of the roof.
  • Apply chemical deicer to the roof.
  • Cool your attic down.
  • Use a snow rake.
  • Install snow guards.
  • Call a professional roofer.
Snow drift on roof after two days of snowfalls

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