How to Safeguard Your Roof from Heavy Snowfall: Expert Tips from The Roofing Center

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Snow accumulation on roofs is a common concern for homeowners, especially during the winter months. The weight of accumulated snow can lead to structural damage, expensive repairs, and even roof collapse. As a leading roofing service in Fort Collins CO, The Roofing Center offers expert advice on how to protect your roof from heavy snowfall and ensure its longevity.

The Dangers of Snow Accumulation

Snow accumulation on roofs can lead to a range of problems. While a light dusting of snow might not pose a significant threat, heavy snowfall can:

  • Cause structural stress, especially on flat roofs.
  • Lead to the formation of ice dams, which prevent snow from sliding off.
  • Result in shingle damage and stress on load-bearing walls.
  • Increase the risk of roof collapse.

Strategies to Prevent Ice Dams

Ice dams are formed when snow melts and refreezes at the edge of the roof, preventing subsequent snowmelt from draining off. These can be particularly damaging, as they can cause water to back up and seep under the shingles, leading to leaks and structural damage.

1. Use Heating Cables 

One effective method to prevent ice dams is the installation of heating cables. These weather-resistant and insulated electric cables warm up the roof’s edges and gutters, preventing ice formation. By strategically placing them along the roof sections prone to ice buildup, homeowners can ensure a smooth flow of melting snow.

2. Regular Roof Inspections

 Regular inspections by Fort Collins roofing contractors can help identify potential problem areas and ensure that the roof is in good condition to handle the winter months.

Calculating Snow Load

Understanding the snow load on your roof is crucial. Most modern roofs are designed to handle up to 20 pounds per square foot. However, the weight of snow can vary:

  • Dry snow weighs approximately 5 pounds per foot.
  • Wet snow can weigh over 20 pounds per foot.

To determine the snow load, measure the depth of the snow and multiply it by 1.25. This will give you an estimate of the weight per square foot your roof is supporting.

Safe Snow Removal Techniques

1. Use a Roof Rake

For pitched roofs, a long-handled roof rake is an ideal tool. Start from the edge and work your way in, ensuring you leave a few inches of snow to avoid damaging the shingles.

2. Avoid Climbing on the Roof

Climbing on a snow-covered roof is dangerous. Not only is there a risk of slipping, but adding weight to an already burdened roof can lead to structural issues.

3. Consult Professionals

If the snow accumulation is too much or if you have a flat roof, it’s best to consult with a roofer from Fort Collins. Professional snow removal services ensure safety and efficiency.

When to Seek Professional Help

If you notice signs like sagging ceilings, cracking noises, doors that won’t close, or severe roof leaks, it’s time to call in the professionals. The Roofing Center, a renowned roofing company in Fort Collins CO, offers comprehensive services to address snow-related roof issues.


Protecting your roof from heavy snowfall is essential to ensure the safety and longevity of your home. With the right preventive measures and timely interventions, homeowners can enjoy a worry-free winter. Remember, when in doubt, always consult with Fort Collins roofing companies to ensure the best care for your roof.


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