Should I Shovel My Roof to Remove Snow?
For many, shoveling the roof and removing ice dams is a ritual of each and every winter. But how do you know when its time to shovel your roof?
Snow staying on your roof could mean your home is well insulated from the outside weather. So, up to a point, snow is good for your heating bill. Some people will shovel just the edges while others remove all the snow from the roof completely. So, what are a few things you should consider before you remove snow from your roof..?
Some indicators that could be signs of to much snow on your roof could be water spots on your ceiling. Look for cracks in your dry wall. Drywall tends to crack from the changing structure it is attached to. Be sure to have an inspector review these cracks in your home for other potential problems that may or may not be related to your roof's snow load. Keep an eye on the "center of the house doors", like the doors to the room upstairs. If it did not stick or jam at all before the snow and it does as the snow begins to accumulate, there is a problem.
Think ahead of where you are going to put all that snow. Clumps of hard snow or ice thrown from a roof can do serious damage below. If you can't see where you are throwing snow, make sure to have someone on the ground to communicate with you, and others, on where it needs to go. Tie down both sides of your ladder to prevent slipping sideways. Remove the weight, but its recommended that you try not to remove the last layer of ice or snow that is attached to the roof. In doing so, you could cause the roof to leak when things begin to thaw.
Ice build up should be removed from the edge of the roof with non-salt chemicals de-icers or electrical de-icing cables---Not with hammers, shovels, hatches ect. Chopping and cutting ice incorrectly could lead to more roof problems than a storm can cause.
If you are thinking of removing the snow from your roof, please be aware of the potential dangers. Not only could you cause more damage but there are such factors as a person sliding off the roof, falling from the ladder, overexerting themselves or even death. Never remove snow alone. The potential for snow to slide off the roof is like being in a avalanche.
Considering utilizing a roofing company with experience. They will be able to inspect your roof for damage caused by melting and refreezing snow and have the correct tools to use to help remove snow and ice.
- The roofing materials used: Metal roofs tend to shed snow and ice better. Snow tends to hold onto singled roofs more.
- Amount of snow accumulated on your roof
- Fluctuations in temperature
- The age of your home: Older homes may have varying requirements for snow loads