Snow on your roof is a fact of life when you live in Maine. This means that keeping your home safe and sound may sometimes require roof snow and ice removal. Excessive buildup can weigh down your roof, and in extreme cases, even lead to failure. Below, we’ll go over some insights to help you safely and efficiently remove snow from your roof.
What’s the best way to remove snow from the roof?
One cubic foot of dry snow weighs about seven pounds, while the wet type weighs 12 to 18 pounds per cubic foot. Although most roofs can handle this excess, large, flat ones are at the greatest risk for structural damage. Monitoring the amount of buildup on your structure is crucial, as deeper and wetter snow increases the load. Timely and safe removal, including raking, is a crucial step to ensure your property is safe during this season.
The trusty roof rake
To manage the Maine winter and any amount of snowfall, you should have the right tools. The best tool for safely removing snow from your roof is a high-quality rake with an adjustable handle. This allows homeowners to reach the lower sections of the roof and remove snow from the ground safely. Plan ahead in the fall and as you prepare your roof for the winter season, don’t forget to purchase a quality roof rake too. Adding this to your annual fall tasks can bring peace of mind.
If you’re wondering how to approach this task, remember – there’s no need to remove all of the snow from your roof. Removing some, particularly along the edges, can decrease the weight and allow the remaining snow to melt faster or slip off. Start from the edge and work your way in. Aim to reduce the snow to 2 or 3 inches rather than scraping it clean, which risks damaging your shingles or other covering. Be cautious that any metal tool could conduct electricity if it touches a power line, and metal tools can damage your structure.
Avoid climbing onto the roof, and don’t use a ladder, as ice can build up on the ladder rungs and the soles of your boots. Never use electric heating devices or open flame devices for this task. If you cannot safely access the top of your house from the ground with an adjustable rake, consider calling the professionals for assistance. This task does require attention, but it’s just as important to stay safe during the winter weather.
When should you worry?
Figuring out how much snow is too much can be tough and is often best left to a professional. Several factors influence this:
- Age and condition of the setup
- Material type – metal, asphalt, rubber
- The pitch
- Amount of buildup
- Snow weight & depth (light and fluffy or heavy and wet)
- Sun exposure, which helps in melting
Where can I find a seasoned expert to help me remove snow from my roof?
If you are concerned about snow or ice compromising the structural integrity of your roof and home, don’t hesitate to call Horch Roofing. We offer seasonal snow removal contracts for peace of mind, and our crews can also come out on a time and materials basis for snow removal to prevent damage to your property.
We specialize in a range of roof repairs and maintenance services, from addressing leaks to preventing and tackling condensation issues, ensuring your roof remains in top condition year-round.
Heat tape installation on eaves, gutters, and valleys can provide a preventative defense against an abundance of snow and ice. Contact our experienced estimators today for a quote on snow guards for metal roofs, heat tape installation, or metal valleys. Contact us online or call us at (207) 273-1111 to learn more about our services and how we can help protect your home!