You’ve got the kitchen of your dreams and a master bedroom suite that would look right at home in a 5-star hotel. But what about your home’s exterior? After all, it’s the exterior of your home that takes the brunt of any season’s worst punches. And it is the exterior of your home that protects you, your family, and everything in it from the elements. And in Minnesota, the elements can be brutal!
In the winter, this means freezing rain, ice, and wind. You name it. In Minnesota, we see it all. But of all the things that can do damage to our homes, one of the worst is the lowly snowflake. Snowflakes may be delicate and beautiful – but when they team up en mass, they can do a lot of damage to our homes.
Snow, especially wet snow, can be extremely heavy if it is allowed to sit for too long on your roof. That weight increases immensely when rain, ice and sleet are added to the mix. Snow melts and turns to ice. When additional snow falls it repeats the process, adding additional weight to your roof. Excess weight on your roof can cause leaks and even cause parts of the roof to collapse.
That’s because snow and ice can very well push a roof to its breaking point, even if the roof was sound before winter arrived. The more snow that falls on your roof, the greater the danger.
Two feet of snow on the average-sized roof can be the equivalent of 38,000 pounds, or 19 tons. All of this weight puts stress on your roof and weakens its structure.
Complicating matters more, the melting of this mass can cause water seepage, which can rot roofs, destroy insulation, flood attics, ruin gutters and damage the interior of your home.
Before attempting to remove snow from roofs, take note that clearing roofs can be a dangerous task. Think twice before jumping on the roof with a shovel in hand. Most professionals don’t support the idea of people climbing onto their roofs to remove the buildup, as the weight of a person may be just enough to trigger the roof to collapse. Also, taking the wrong step on an icy roof can easily send you sliding down a slippery slope.
Fortunately, if you have a properly constructed roof, you shouldn’t have to worry about your roof collapsing, even if you get some big snow drifts on your roof. On the other hand, if you know you have structural problems with your roof, this would be a good year to have a Minnesota roofing contractor do an inspection of your roofs condition. With more snow and cold weather predicted for Minneapolis and St. Paul area, the sooner, the better!