Large amounts of snow covering a house's roof.

Roof Snow Removal

Even a new roof can be susceptible to damage from large amounts of snow.  Protect your home by safely removing snow.

A person taking off snow.

In some parts of the country, snow—sometimes an awful lot of snow—is just part of winter weather.  But how much snow is too much for your home’s roof?   The typical roof can handle just over three feet of snow, since 10 inches of snow will add about five pounds of weight per square foot on your roof (and most roofs can handle four times that).  But there’s a catch: Wet and deep snow places greater strain on your roof, as does thawed-and-refrozen snow.   Roofs that are older or weaker may not be able to handle as much snow as a brand new roof.  There’s a higher risk of ice dams or—worse yet—a disastrous roof cave-in.

What can you do to protect your home?  First of all, don’t try to salt your roof to either prevent snow accumulation or melt snow that’s already there; it won’t work very well, and what you’ll probably end up with is discolored shingles and damage to your flower beds and lawn.  You could use a shovel if you can safely do so, or a roof rake, to remove excess snow and reduce the weight on your roof.  People are injured or killed every year falling off their roof in an attempt to clear snow, so be very careful and consider having a professional do this for you.

Ice damming on a roof.

In some parts of the country, snow—sometimes an awful lot of snow—is just part of winter weather.  But how much snow is too much for your home’s roof?   The typical roof can handle just over three feet of snow, since 10 inches of snow will add about five pounds of weight per square foot on your roof (and most roofs can handle four times that).  But there’s a catch: Wet and deep snow places greater strain on your roof, as does thawed-and-refrozen snow.   Roofs that are older or weaker may not be able to handle as much snow as a brand new roof.  There’s a higher risk of ice dams or—worse yet—a disastrous roof cave-in.

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15585