Why Businesses Have to Worry About Removing Snow and Ice

Washington County home and business owners scrambled during the last week of January to remove snow and ice left on their roofs by the area’s most recent snowstorm. The snow covered homes and structures created a picturesque scene in the area but snow can put unwanted stress on a roof potentially causing serious damage. Following the storm Washington County roofing companies were continuously busy removing snow from buildings to prevent this damage from occurring. The lighter snow and warmer temperatures in the area aided in the process of removing the snow but it still proved to be hard work.

Removing snow and ice

Clearing snow with shovel after storm is never fun.

The biggest worry for homes and business is the potential for ice blockage in their gutters that can cause the formation of ice dams. An ice dam is a thick layer of ice that forms along gutters and overhangs during freezing temperatures. Melting snow is then trapped behind the ice dam where it begins to pool and can eventually find its way underneath shingles and other roofing material. When this happens, the roof begins to leak and can lead to growth of mold and mildew as well as structural damage.

Home and business owners can help prevent the formation of ice dams and remove snow by spraying hot water on the eaves of a roof where the gutters are. The hot water should open some holes in the any ice so that water can flow out through the gutter system. Actively removing ice and snow will help to prevent damage to the roof and the potential for water leakage.

Many of the local business owners began to worry that the weight of the snow and ice would cause their roof to collapse. Home Insurance companies tell homeowners that the amount of ice and snow that a roof can support largely depends on the condition and the age of the roof. The Institute for Business and Home Safety says that most residential roofs are able to support around 20 pounds of snow per square foot before they become stressed. However, a good rule to follow is if there is more than a foot of snow resting on your roof you should have it removed.

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