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Will my Roof Hold up?

March 6, 2019

With the month of March already underway, is it necessary to proceed with removing snow off your roof?

Some signs do not lie. If you:

  • See cracks appearing on the walls,
  • Have difficulty operating your doors,
  • Hear strange creaking noises of unknown origin,
  • Notice sprinkler heads lower than usual
  • See your ceiling deform or crack

Then, it is necessary to act immediately. In the case of buildings where the roof structure is very high and without a ceiling, for instance industrial buildings, warehouses, etc., signs of structural deformation may be more difficult to identify.

An assessment may be necessary if some of these signs appear simultaneously or if you have any doubts. It is strongly suggested to consult an expert to assess the situation as structural deformations may not only be problematic, but also a hazard to the occupants.

Will my Roof Hold up?

The building codes establish snow loads for the calculation of roof structures (live loads) which may vary depending on climate zones. Even if your roof is designed to receive snow loads, excessive buildup can affect its structural integrity.

There is always a danger when the roof supports a load greater than the one it was designed to.

Packed snow from successive snowfalls on the roof becomes denser by absorbing moisture, like partially melting snow or during rain or ice storm. It is therefore important to inspect the roof during winter and, if necessary, remove excessive snow.

When snow removal involves climbing on the roof and for safety purposes, it is strongly advised to seek the services of a specialized contractor.