Winters in Chicago can be beautiful, with freshly fallen snow making for picturesque views. But snow and ice can also cause roof leaks if you do not take the proper precautions. Every year, you should pursue these preventative measures:
Water damage caused by ice and snow can become costly and also eat up a lot of your time. Use these strategies to prevent roof damage in the winter.
1. Keep Your Roof Cold
If the attic is warm, that causes snow on the roof to melt quickly, which can lead to ice dams and icicles. By keeping your attic cool, you also reduce the chances of fast-melting snow and ice on the roof. Choose insulation that allows heat to escape and insulate your home below the attic to keep hot air from creeping up the stairs. Use foam spray to seal any plumbing vents or wires.
2. Clean Out Your Gutters
Ideally, you would do this in the fall, but you can still clean out your gutters once the latest round of snow and ice have melted. Clogged gutters make it impossible for melting snow and ice to run off your roof. Water can get stuck in the gutters and freeze into damaging ice. Or, the water may pool on your roof without a way to escape, which can lead to leaks. Get any sticks or leaves out of gutters to keep them free of blockages.
3. Use a Roof Rake on Snow
Chicago winters can include a hefty amount of snow. Letting it all pile on the roof can lead to structural damage, and it can seep under shingles to cause leaks. You need to remove the heavy snow safely, but hopping on the roof yourself can put you in danger of slipping and falling or, if there’s enough snow, perhaps even going through the roof. Use a roof rake to remove the snow instead. You can extend it to reach up your roof and safely pull off the snow.
If you notice any ice dams have built up, resist the urge to remove them yourself by heating or chopping them. Get a professional to assist you to avoid hurting your home.
4. Get a Roof Inspection
One of the smartest ways to prevent damage from snow is to make sure your roof is in good shape. Having a yearly inspection by a professional can alert you to any issues before they get worse with a foot of snow on top.
Has your home sustained water damage from snow? Get in touch with ServiceMaster of Lincoln Park. We can restore your home to its former condition, and we can do it quickly with our experienced team. Contact us today by filling out our online form or calling (773) 346-6767.