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How Snow and Ice Impact Your Roof

The effects of snow and ice on our daily lives are often plain to see: slippery pavements, treacherous driving conditions and a lot of de-icing of windscreens. However, the effect of snow and ice on the roofs of our homes is unknown or underestimated by a lot of people. In this article, we’ll look at how our roofs are impacted by snow and ice. 

Snow dams

Snow dams form when snow buildup on a roof starts to melt, due to the heat coming from the attic. As this snow melts, the water can seep through to the eaves of the roof through the gaps between roof tiles. When this happens, the water can eventually leak into the house, causing structural damage as well as damage to wiring, electrical equipment and furniture. 

Prevention: A good way to prevent snow dams from building up is to salt your roof ahead of time. Obviously this is only possible if you have warning, so check the weather forecast and cover your roof in ice if you know that snow is on the way – the salt will prevent snow from building up and ice from forming. 

Ice dams

Ice dams are something of a consequence of snow dams. The melting snow can cascade into gutters, at which point it will start to freeze again. When the water is frozen, the gutters become blocked, and the weight of the ice can cause the gutter system to collapse. It’s important to stay vigilant and clear your guttering regularly during the winter. 

Prevention: To prevent snow and ice dams, make sure that your roof insulation is up to scratch – this will help prevent heat from melting the snow on your roof. An added benefit of better insulation is it helps keep energy bills down by keeping your home warm and reducing the need to turn up the thermostat. 

Roof collapse

During the heaviest snowfalls, the tremendous weight of the snow that accumulates on the roof can cause it to collapse. This is a more common occurrence on flat roofs rather than sloped ones, but needless to say, it can be catastrophic. Luckily for UK residents, the snowfall is very rarely anywhere near the levels required for a roof collapse. 

Prevention: The best way to prevent a roof collapse is to arrange for a roof inspection as soon as possible. Do not try and remove snow from your own roof – it can be very dangerous in icy conditions. Call for professional assistance if you are concerned about your roof. 

Salmon Solutions are expert installers of single ply and metal roofing for customers throughout the UK. We’re accredited by leading industry authorities, including the Single Ply Roofing Association, the Federation of Traditional Metal Roofing Contractors and VM Zinc at Work. These accreditations are proof of the high quality of our work and our standing within the industry. For more information, please get in touch with us today. 



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