A Look at How Snow and Hail Does So Much Roof Damage

A Look at How Snow and Hail Does So Much Roof Damage

January 15, 2021

Winters in Michigan can be quite rough, and this year especially there has been a whole lot of snow and ice for residents to deal with. Elements like snow and hail aren’t just a big nuisance—they can also cause significant damage to your roof in some circumstances.

Here’s a quick look at some of the ways in which these forms of precipitation can damage your roof during the winter months, and how the best roofing companies in Traverse City, MI can help.

Weight buildup

The sheer amount of snow that builds up on your roof can become problematic, especially if it’s wet and heavy. Six inches of wet snow will weigh about as much as 38 inches of dry snow, so if you’ve been getting a lot of wet snow over the winter, it will place a whole lot of extra weight on your roof that it’s not used to dealing with.

Every roof handles weight loads differently. If your roof is in poor structural condition, does not have adequate drainage or has experienced hail damage in the past, it’s more likely to be over-stressed, which could result in leaks, cracking, sagging or even a collapse in extreme circumstances.

Ice dam formation

Ice dams form when the warm air rising inside your home goes up into the attic and warms up the shingles on your roof. Snow that builds up on the roof then starts to melt, and the water will then flow down toward the roof edge, where it will begin to refreeze. As more snow melts and refreezes, that ice gets thicker, forming an ice dam due to the water getting backed up on the roof. That water and ice will start to seep under the shingles, and look for weaknesses in the roof where it can flow.

These ice dams can be extremely heavy and cause a large buildup of weight, so making sure your attic is properly insulated and that your roof has sufficient ventilation is crucial for preventing them from forming. In addition, using a roof rake to remove snow from the edges of the roof will help avoid this issue.

Hail damage

When hail collides with the roof, it can cause impact damage to shingles. Combined with wind, it could cause those shingles to lift and separate from the structure of the roof. The freezing and thawing cycles of the winter, combined with significant snow cover, could exacerbate the issues caused by hail damage in the first place, such as loose or cracked shingles, damage to caulking in gutter seams, detached flashing and other similar issues.

Therefore, if you know you’ve had hail damage, it’s important to have your roof inspected so you can avoid potentially preventable damage to your roof during the winter.

For more information about the effects of hail, snow and ice on your roof, contact one of the best roofing companies in Traverse City, MI today. Qualified Roofing has over 25 years of experience, and we look forward to hearing from you soon.

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