Cold weather is upon us in most of the northern states and even many of the southern states that experience a chill this time of year are finding their evenings getting a little too cold for comfort. With the cold, usually come storms, in the northern areas, that can be rain, sleet, freezing rain, snow or a blizzard. Southern states might get some flurries or freezing rain. The south’s biggest concern tends to be frost and freeze warnings. Obviously, as with any other northerner, I find the way they freak out over some flurries or frost on the ground very amusing.
While some storms just show us the beauty of nature, painting everything a beautiful shade of white with crystal ice prisms, other storms can pose a real threat to your safety. Sleet, freezing rain and that horrible, heavy wet snow is not only a major traffic hazard, that ice and snow can also be heavy enough to rip some pretty big trees right out of the ground by the roots, and that tree can crash down on your room giving you air conditioning at the worst time of the year. Something like that, insurance companies call “acts of God,” but the major point is there isn’t much anyone can do to prevent it, unless they make sure they have no trees anywhere near their property. Of course, this would escalate their cooling costs astronomically through the summer and also aesthetically make your property look a bit bare and odd.
The other dangers of those storms can certainly be mitigated so you risk little to no damage, although nothing is guaranteed, better safe than sorry. One thing you want to make sure if you are in an area that regularly gets several feet of snow is do your best to keep it to a minimum on your roof. Too much snow, especially heavy, wet snow can cause your roof to collapse. There are a couple of ways to achieve this. The first is the least expensive, but the most work. Simply get out a ladder and using a good push broom (a shovel may damage your roof), slowly and carefully clear the snow from your roof. Keep in mind while you are doing this, that your roof will be slippery, and the risk of falling is high, so you would also want to secure yourself with some type of harness attached to something sturdy like your chimney.
The other way to keep your roof snow free is quite easy although it can be a bit costly both for the installation and the electric it takes to use. There are roof heating systems that can be installed which when turned on, heat your roof and melt the snow. While I’m sure there are do it yourself kits available, I would really recommend you have a professional install such a system. Unless you are an electrician, you are dealing with some pretty complicated wiring and it’s best to let the professionals do such jobs. Remember, your physical safety is really the most important thing when using either of these methods to keep your roof snow free.