Snow is usually the first sign of winter for most states. It is desired as a magical weather phenom that will get kids out of school, there are songs about it. Some shows and movies are centered around it. It is beautiful. However It is also dangerous. Snowstorms cripple roads and businesses. It causes houses to collapse. The extreme snow can cause the power to go and create dangerous and life-threatening circumstances. It has to be removed. That is why we will take this time to discover some snow removal roof service facts and information. You will certainly find out something you didn’t know before.
Before we go into more detail about the snow removal service and snow removing process, let’s answer this question:
Snow: Is it that heavy?
On average, snow weighs about five pounds per square inch. That doesn’t sound like much, but when you think about the fact that your roof can hold withstand about twenty-pounds per square inch, you begin to realize that the most your roof can handle are four feet of snow.
If you have trees overhead, then you can count on the fact that they are likely to withstand less. Which means when the snow starts to accumulate, you are going to lose branches. These snow-covered branches are going to cause more stress on your roof. It is best to call a snow removal service and get the snow out of there when it reaches around two feet rather than waiting for the four feet limit.
Another problem with having snow on your roof is that it causes ice dams. What are Ice dams? Well, these dams cannot form without snow. They are blocks of ice that build up. You can often see them from the ground in the form of icicles hanging down. They can cause avalanches when they break or create tears and holes in your roof. They are heavier than snow as well. Don’t underestimate these little things, they can cause serious damage.
What is a snow guard?
A snow guard is sometimes part of the snow removal service, it’s a shield that you put on your roof to keep snow and ice from avalanching onto the ground below. It keeps pets, people, and vehicles safe. While they are a necessity, they are worth the investment.
PRO TIP –> Getting a snow guard will also help lower your homeowner insurance costs.
What are the heat cables?
Heat cables are cables that installed around the eave or overhang of your roof. They heat up and cause the snow and ice to melt on contact. However, there are problems with this solution. First, you usually have to pay a professional to have them installed. They are expensive, and for the most part you shouldn’t install them yourself if you don’t know what you’re doing. Second, they only work if the snow and ice touch them. This means that you could have snow on either side of them. They don’t work long-term or in storms.
Do I really need a roof snow removal service or can I do it myself?
Well, that depends on the amount of snow. The property owner should rake their roof if it is light and loose. It is recommended that you rake your roof when it is about six inches thick. Anytime that the snow cannot be raked, you can shovel it.
If there is an ice mix, hard packed snow, or more than six inches deep, then you will want to use a shovel. As you work on the roof, you should always have safety measures in place. This could mean tie-ins, straps, or even a safety harness. It is important that you realize when you cannot safely do it and call in a professional. You should never try to remove the snow off your roof in extreme weather or when the snow is deeper than three feet as it will cause stress on your roof and may cause it to collapse.
The “Dos” for removing snow from roof
- Start with the snow drifts at lower levels first.
- Follow the shape of your roof. Move in a downward motion that goes along with the pitch of your roof.
- Allow gravity to work with and for you.
- Keep all the snow moving towards one place.
- Forewarn anyone that may be moving around your building before you start.
- Make sure no cars are parked near your home.
The “Don’ts” for removing snow
- Don’t use metal tools
- Don’t remove snow in windy conditions
- Don’t remove the snow if you are not completely comfortable with your ability.
- Don’t get on the roof until you have cleared the area you are starting in.
When should you call a professional roof snow removal service provider?
There are times when you should not attempt to remove the snow yourself. These are the times when you should call your local roofing contractor to make sure you are getting the right help. If any of the following points are familiar to you, please seek professional help for removing the snow from your roof:
- – You have a multi-story home.
- – Your roof has many levels.
- – You do not have the proper equipment for safely removing the snow.
- – You do not have support in case of an emergency. Snow removal is a two-person job.
When you should not remove the snow
Every single time you rake or shovel snow you take away particles from the shingles. Over shoveling or raking weakens the shingles. It can cause the roof to leak, reduce its fire retarding abilities, and reduce its lifespan. Roofs that have been overly shoveled often need to be replaced more often. It is recommended that you do not remove the snow unless it is presenting a danger to the home or yard, there is roof work that cannot wait for the snow to melt, or it is at the point where it will present damage if not removed.
To reduce the need for snow removal, you should make sure that your attic is up to code and properly insulated. Keeping your attic at or above code will ensure that your roof can handle the snow and that some of the snow will melt efficiently on its own.
There you have everything that you need to know about roof snow removal from the roof of your building or business. Remember that just because you can remove the snow, it does not mean that you need to remove it. Safety should always be the priority. Call for the professionals.