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  • Mike Larsen

How Snow & Ice Impact Your Roof in Holly

Updated: Dec 23, 2021

Winters in Holly can be snowy and icy. But many wonder if this has a large impact on the life of their roof. Learn more about how roofs in Holly are affected by ice and snow.


Every day, people rely on their roofs to protect them and their homes from harsh weather conditions. This is especially true during the colder winter months when inclement weather can strike at any moment. Winter is one of the hardest seasons on a roof, and snow and ice can have an impact on its longevity.


To keep your roof in good shape for years to come, its helps to understand how snow and ice can affect your roof's structural integrity, as well as different roofing materials that are better able to withstand wintry weather, and how to prevent damage.


Common Impact of Snow & Ice on Your Roof: Stress


When something puts external pressure on a stationary object, the object experiences stress. If you've ever been outside shoveling snow and the shaft of the shovel has snapped in half, then you have an idea of how stress from snow and ice can affect your roof. The heavy downward force from snow accumulation is one of the most common impacts of snow on a roof.


Your roof can sag in areas of intense weight, causing water, snow and ice to build up even more. This heavy, isolated accumulation can lead to other issues such as leaks. In the worst-case scenario, your roof can even suffer a cave-in.


Common Impact of Snow & Ice on Your Roof: Ice Dams


Ice dams occur when the warm air seeping from the edges of your roof causes the snow near your gutters to melt. This melted snow then freezes, causing a barrier, or a dam, of ice to form around the edge of your roof. An ice dam can prevent water and snow from leaving your roof, leading to many issues that can cause damage.


If water and snow are unable to slide off your roof, the ice dam can hold back excess water which can eventually cause leaks. The water can also freeze and thaw multiple times in a row, leading to gutter damage or cause sections of gutter to disconnect from your roof altogether.


Common Impact of Snow & Ice on Your Roof: Leaks


Many people associate leaks with the rainy summer months, but the truth is that snow is actually a leading culprit in causing roof leaks. In addition to the stress that snow can put on your roof and ice dams, snow can also find its way beneath your shingles or work its way into small cracks in your roof.


These wintertime leaks can make damaged roofs worse, but the effects can reach even further. When the next sunny day rolls around, that snow can melt and get into your house. This water can soak insulation, walls and ceilings, which can lead to severe water damage and mold.


Common Impact of Snow & Ice on Your Roof: Freeze & Thaw


People in areas with cold winters understand how damaging the freeze and thaw cycle can be. Roads in the northern United States are prone to potholes every year, as water seeps into cracks in the asphalt. This water freezes during the winter and then expands, causing large holes in the road. The same principle applies to the impacts of ice on a roof.


If you have gaps in your shingles or small cracks anywhere on your roof, water could find its way inside. As the temperature drops in the winter, the water will expand as it freezes. The expansion can tear shingles from the roof and turn small cracks into larger ones.


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