Three Common Winter Roofing Hazards and How to Prevent Them

Three Common Winter Roofing Hazards and How to Prevent Them

Picture of ice dam.

Roofs are often associated with the concepts of shelter and safety, and for good reason. With top-notch roofing contractors like Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors on your side, your roof will hold up against the worst weather Minnesota can throw at it. Every part of it, from your fascia and soffit to your shingles, functions in tandem to keep your family safe, warm, and content, no matter what goes down above your heads.

However, despite the apparent infallibility of your roof, it’s important to note that even the most well-done structure can become hazardous to your family’s health and wellbeing under the correct circumstances. Just like any part of your home, roofs require periodic care and tending to in order to keep looking and performing at their best, especially as winter approaches. Depending on the type of roof, this can include:

  • Cleaning out your gutter system on the regular. A must-do for roofs of any type, especially in Minnesota, as it helps prevent the winter menaces that are ice dams (more on this roofing hazard later). Luckily, it’s quite a simple chore that’s easy to check off your before-winter list, especially if you have seamless gutters, whether it be by doing it yourself or hiring someone else.
  • Removing excessive snow. Minnesota is, of course, well-known for its wintertime precipitation levels. Buildings (and roofs) are thus made to compensate. However, under specific weather conditions, even the sturdiest roof will begin to flag, so it’s best to hire a snow removal company to get up there if you’re at all concerned.
  • Minding the well-being of your shingles. A lack of shingles in any location severely compromises the integrity of your roof (again, more on how this can be dangerous later). Anything from storms to simple wear-and-tear can mean the downfall of the shoddiest roof—the smartest choice of action to combat this hazard is to ensure your roof is completed by any number of reputable roofing companies in the first place. Roof repair can also help you compensate if this is, unfortunately, not a possibility.

Indeed, the smart homeowner knows that a little pre-winter care can mean the difference between a happy, healthy family and one that suffers the ill effects of raggedy roofing. But what, exactly, are those ill effects? And what kinds of health hazards do those ill effects pose? To that, we pose another question: you didn’t think the roofing pros at Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors would neglect to tell you, did you?

Ice Dams: A State-Wide Threat

As we stated above, you’ll want to clean out your gutter system periodically in order to prevent what’s called an ice dam from setting up shop on your roof. Formed by a complex interaction of melting snow and a narrow threshold of temperatures, these nasty nuisances can result in quite the puddle of standing water. While water on its own isn’t a threat to your roof (it stands out in the rain all the time, after all), standing water is, as your roofing is designed to shed it. Why else do you have gutter systems and a sloping roof profile?

When water gets under your shingles and flows down into your home, it’s more than a cosmetic issue. Sure you can wind up with some nasty water stains, but those are small potatoes compared for the potential for electrical fires and mold. The former of which is obviously dangerous, but don’t shortchange fungi—they can cause quite significant health issues if left unchecked.

Take care of your roof and you’ll take care of your family. Remove ice dams as soon as you notice them and opt for roof repair when needed.

Wet Insulation: An Unpleasant Menace

Are your energy bills soaring? Is your family finding it hard to stay warm? Wet insulation could be the culprit. While a leaky roof isn’t the only cause of wet insulation (we talk more about the nuances of roof ventilation on our roofing blog), it can very well be one. Regardless, wet insulation should never be ignored, as it’s a perfect area for mold to begin to grow—a certifiable health hazard, if we ever saw one. It also could mean that moisture is accumulating in your attic at a much larger scale, rotting your roof from the inside-out. This leads us to our final wintertime health hazard:

Collapsed Roofs: A Straight-Up Health Horror Story

If your roofing is well-maintained and well-installed, you absolutely do not need to worry about the potential disaster of collapse. If it isn’t, however, you’ll need to get a roofing pro to your home ASAP to ensure you’re not at risk. Caused by anything from excessive snow load to structural damage from rot, a collapsed roof poses an immediate health hazard to not just your family, but to anyone who enters your home. We don’t think we need to explain why.

Contact Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors for Skilled Roof Repair and Roof Replacement

When only the best roof maintenance will do, you know who to call: the company that brought you this blog. Reach our Sauk Rapids office at 320-252-9086 today before your roof compromises your family’s well being.

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