There are multiple ways to remove snow from your roof and one of them is a lot safer than the other. But first we need to discuss why you may want to consider roof snow removal in the first place.
The picture on the left really shows how snow can build up in specific places o your roof and while this is not really enough snow to be considered dangerous from a snow load perspective, it is a problem waiting to become a nightmare for someone. When snow builds up like this, especially along the edge of a wall, there is always some spots were the snow melts and water begins to run down along the wall. If this water can find a way inside the roof into your home, there is going to be a lot of water damage. In this specific situation, this is the primary reason for roof snow removal.
For most people it is more a concern about snow load on the roof becoming too much for the rafters to support and it collapses. The weight of snow can be a combination of the weight of snow and sometimes rain during a warm spell that falls on the snow that is on the roof and is absorbed by the snow. It never gets a chance to run off the roof adding to the overall weight of the snow on the roof. As more and more snow is added, the weight becomes too much and the roof collapses.
Roof Snow Removal
As the picture shows this man is up on his roof removing the snow. The roof is relatively flat which is another reason the snow accumulates, making the roof relatively safe to be on and not risk slipping off. Other roofs are much more steep and many consumers have fallen off their roof and been seriously injured. We do not suggest that you try this approach due to the possible risk of falling. Never the less the snow needs to be removed and this is one of the reasons we are writing this post. We wanted to provide alternatives for removing snow from the roof.
Some consumers will take the safer approach of using what is called a “snow rake”.
The roof shown in this second picture is slightly steeper and could be a large risk for some people attempting to get on the roof to remove the snow. The snow rake which is a scraper attached to a long pole allows the consumer to stand on the ground and scrape the snow off the roof. It can take a bit longer to do and it is hard on the arms since you are constantly working with this long pole. But it is much safer and the only risk you have is slipping on the driveway or the lawn area that you stand on.
Roof Snow Removal – Using a Scraper
It can take awhile to remove the snow and if there is a crust on the snow, it can be difficult to get the scraper to dig into the snow and bring the snow off the roof. However if you are persistent it will come off and you will have the satisfaction of not worrying about the snow load on your roof. Consumers are cautioned that you still need to move some of the snow away from the home if it really builds up and you will have to remove it from the driveway or sidewalk if it falls on this area.
Having used one of these scrapers several times, I can tell you they work great and are much safer. The pole comes in sections and can be disassembled for storage. I even added a second section to it to extend the reach to the higher areas of my roof so that I did not need to worry about snow load on the secondary roof. We also take special care to make sure that snow does not build up below the skylight were an ice dam can form potentially causing further damage from water leaking inside of our home.
Take the safe route when you are considering roof snow removal. Make sure that you do not allow the snow load to build up and also make sure that you use a snow rake to remove snow from your roof in a safe manner without worrying about falling off of the roof.
Another area that gets consumers into trouble during the winter are frozen pipes. You may want to read a post about this subject. If you do, click here.