Removing snow from a roof using a rake

The Importance of Having Snow Removed from Your Roof

Snow Removal from a Roof Can Avoid Major Structural Issues and Repair Costs

When depicting winter scenes, or perhaps the festive season, many graphic designers or artists will include a home that is decorated with coloured lights hanging from the eaves, wreaths adorning doors and windows, a snowman on the lawn, and perhaps some smoke billowing from the chimney; it is also common to see pure white snow sitting on the roof.

While these images are meant to represent the joys of winter, the beauty of its scenery, and the spirit of the holiday season, they may also be encouraging, albeit subliminally, a situation of potential concern for homeowners; allowing snow to accumulate on the roof of their home, though attractive in its own right, can prove to be rather detrimental.

There are several different issues that can result from the over-accumulation of snow on a roof; these will include:

  • Formation of ice dams – snow can melt (due to sunshine or heat escaping from the home) then refreeze along the edge of the roof; this creates an ice-dam effect which can redirect water underneath the shingles and into the home, resulting in significant damage to the roof, the rafters, and the interior walls and ceilings.
  • Stress on the roof structure – roofs are designed to withstand a certain amount of weight based on local building codes, etc.; if those limits are exceeded, the roof can actually collapse, resulting in severe structural damage to the home and the potential risk of injury to its occupants. It might also negate approval of any insurance claims.
  • Damaged eavestroughs – gutters can fill with wet snow and ice, making them too heavy for their anchors and causing them to pull away or fall from the fascia; this will also inhibit the normal flow of water/melted snow, forcing that water to spill over the sides of the gutters and cause damage to masonry, siding, and to the foundation.
  • Blocked roof vents – the ceiling space or attic under the roof cannot be adequately ventilated, leading to the formation of condensation in this area and the potential for future issues with the shingles, roof deck, and attic insulation; not to mention higher energy consumption and costs.

Therefore, in the event of a significant snowfall or a substantial accumulation of snow on the roof (six inches or more), it would be important for homeowners to have this weight removed before any appreciable amount of structural damage can occur. This is usually accomplished in one of these ways:

  • Roof raking – with a specially-made tool (snow rake) to pull snow from the roof
  • Shoveling – through the use of a plastic-edged scoop to prevent shingle damage

The use of one method versus the other will be dependent on several factors, notably:

  • Quantity of snow
  • Height of the roof
  • Surface area of roof
  • Type of roofing material
  • Type of snow (powdery or wet)

Above all else is the safety factor; working at heights, either from a ladder or on the roof surface, has inherent dangers that are substantially magnified in snowy or icy conditions. Therefore, in addition to the importance of removing accumulated snow from a roof, it is highly recommended that homeowners engage trained professionals to perform this job; such snow removal services are provided by the experts at Integrity Roofers, one of the leading roofing companies in Toronto and the GTA.

For further information on the advantages of contracting the skilled crews from Integrity Roofers for the removal of accumulated snow from the roof of your home this winter, please visit our Roof Snow Removal page.

The Value of Investing in Professional Services to Remove Snow from Your Roof

Icicles Hanging From HomeAlthough it may be more economical for homeowners to remove the snow from their roof on their own or through the use of inexperienced or unqualified contractors, the risks of any such action will far outweigh the immediate cost of hiring the licensed professionals from Integrity Roofers. The value of investing in these trained and knowledgeable snow removal experts includes:

  • Use of proper equipment
  • Use of most suitable method
  • Appropriate attention to safety
  • Care for the protection of property
  • Valid workplace insurance coverage
  • General liability insurance coverage

The potential expenses associated with matters relating to personal injury, roof/property damage, and insurance claims can be both steep and enduring; due to the importance of removing accumulated snow from the roof of a home, from the perspectives of structural and financial implications, the tangible cost of professional snow removal services should be viewed as a viable investment in overall home maintenance.

For efficient and expert removal of snow from the roof of your home this winter, call the specialists from Integrity Roofers today at 416-736-7373 or Contact us to arrange for our services throughout the season.

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