Winter Storm's punishment to your roof.
In Illinois we get every end of the spectrum when it comes to weather. Up until recently it’s been cold with some flurries—but February seems to want to make itself known. Hopefully we can get through another Winter season without our homes taking on major damage.
However, hope alone doesn’t work. We have to prepare our homes and be ready for what to do if the ugliest of situations do occur. SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is the largest restoration company in the area, we take caring for your home seriously! Read on for important tips to keep your home safe and warm and to prevent winter damage this season.
Always keep Snow build up at a minimum.
Roofs are engineered to handle all sorts of elements. Everything from rain to hail to snow to extreme heat-proper maintenance can keep your roof and your home safe and dry. Snow, rain, and debris commonly collect on your roof- especially in flatter areas.
But this doesn't mean that snow buildup won't become a problem on pitched roofs. The best way to protect your roof from snow damage is by investing in a good quality snow rake. A snow rake is a simple tool that allows you to remove excessive snow buildup from your roof. This can all be done while standing safely on the ground.
To use, gently pull the rake towards you down the slope of your roof, being careful to stand away from falling snow and debris. This simple tool is a proactive way to protect your roof in the winter months. Never use any type of defrosting material on your roof-it can damage your shingles and/or other roofing materials.
If you hold off on using a snow rake, make sure your gutters have been properly attached and your downspouts cleared. This way as the massive amounts of snow melt and run down your roof-it will properly drain away from your house and prevent further damage from water on your foundation.
Remember to remove Ice Build-Up to Prevent Ice Dams & Winter Damage
Just as much as you keep an eye out to remove snow build-up, you should also keep an eye on your roof for ice build-up. Ice can be especially dangerous when left accumulating for too long. The biggest areas of ice accumulation are the gutters. While icicles may look beautiful and like a normal sign of winter, they are a major threat to your roof. You can easily prevent icicles from growing by simply knocking them down with a broom or any other safe device that gives you plenty of clearance while cleaning the Ice.
We do strongly advise you to use caution when removing ice from your roof. If you whack an icicle too hard, you could potentially wipe out your entire gutter if you knock it too hard. Gutting your gutters of icicles is especially important in preventing what is perhaps the worst winter worry when it comes to your roof: ice dams. If you notice an ice dam forming it is important to address the issue right away. An ice dam is essentially a large clump of ice near the edge of your roof. If left long enough an ice dam will freeze your gutter and block snow from naturally falling off your roof.
You can prevent ice dams from forming by first staying on top of snow and icicle build-up. Make sure that water can flow freely from your gutters as ice begins to melt. Use an ice pick to gently chip away at large clumps of ice-safely-, removing them piece by piece from your gutter. As always, remember to stand away from your roof to protect yourself from falling objects. If you're not sure how often you need to clear away snow and/or ice from your roof, check the weather forecast. If it looks like your area will be getting six inches of snow, this is generally a good time to get your home ready.
As always, SERVPRO of Bloomington/Pontiac is here when that unwanted water finds it way into your home. Our experienced and professional team is ready to help you with all your home’s needs.