Winter is undoubtedly one of the most difficult seasons for a roof. The snow, heavy rain, and strong winds can take a toll on any roofing system, especially when combined with age and wear and tear. Harsh winter conditions can put your home at risk of challenging roof issues. However, with a proper structural health monitoring system, knowledge, and preparation, you can take action before roof damage becomes catastrophic. Here are some of the common winter roof problems and how to prevent them.
Ice dams are common when indoor heat rises through the ceiling and enters the attic, warming the roof and melting multiple snow patches. The melted water flows down until it meets other parts of the roof that are still in freezing temperatures and forms a slab of ice that builds up along the eaves of your roof, putting weight on your gutters and loosening shingles. Ensure your home is properly ventilated to increase airflow and prevent ice from making small dams.
During winter, snowstorms come with strong winds that can wreak havoc on your roof. This can pull up and peel shingles. They can also damage your flashing, which increases the likelihood of roof leaks and wall damage. Check your shingles after a winter storm. If you notice shingles on the ground, hire a roofing professional to inspect and conduct replacements.
Condensation happens when there is little or no ventilation in the attic. Your attic and roof work together to regulate temperature. The attic does not regulate temperatures when poorly ventilated, leading to serious problems. Moisture can build up and cause issues like mold and mildew growth. Having proper ventilation is key to a long-lasting roof and cozy home.
Snow might appear fluffy and lightweight at a glance, but when it builds, it carries tremendous weight. A weak roof may not withstand the weight of snow build-up, putting your home at serious risk of water and snow damage. To prevent this, conduct regular roof inspections and remove ice whenever there is a build-up to keep your roof in excellent shape.
Litter in gutters is common during the fall and winter seasons. Leaves and tiny branches are washed down and get stuck in the gutters. Birds and animals can also leave a mess in your gutters, blocking them. This prevents rainwater from flowing smoothly off the roof down the drain. It’s essential to check your gutters often and clean them thoroughly during winter. Sometimes, you need to replace your gutters, especially if they appear cracked and worn out.