Our Northeast Ohio autumn weather can be a real mixed bag. Warm and sunny, cool and blustery, frigid and rainy. Whether we like it or not, snowy weather isn’t far away, and our region is predicted to have a winter of very cold temperatures with bursts of heavy snowfall. Fall is the time to prepare your commercial roof for these extreme winter conditions—before they begin.
Preventive Commercial Roof Maintenance for Winter
Roberts Roofing conducts fall roofing inspections to check for potential problem areas inside and out. Inside, we look for signs of leaks or cracks, check that the amount and condition of insulation is still good and track venting pathways for any damage or issues, all the way to the exterior of the building. This is an often overlooked step that helps prevent ice from building up at the exit point, which can lead to water damage to your building.
Outside, we check HVAC equipment curbs, skylight curbs and caulking, flashings and venting to make sure there aren’t areas that could cause ice to accumulate and/or snow and create a blockage. We also examine the roof membrane for wear and tear, gaps or issues with caulking or flashing which can be caused by our area’s freeze-thaw cycling alternated with hot summer weather. Fixing any noticeable problems now can prevent thousands of dollars in damage down the road.
Preparing for Snow’s Weight
Snow accumulation doesn’t just create the potential for water problems on your roof; it can clog your drainage systems and cause damage to the whole building. Snow is surprisingly heavy as it accumulates, and wind can cause it to build up higher in some areas than others, straining your roof considerably. We recommend periodic roof inspections throughout the winter, particularly during or after heavy snowstorms.
Here are a few things that can indicate snow weight is causing problems for your commercial building roof. If you see any of these, contact the roofing professionals at Roberts Roofing right away:
- Sagging: Sprinklers or light fixtures that appear to sag, or even the ceiling itself sagging means damage is imminent.
- Sounds: Cracking, creaking and popping in the roof can be signs that damage is about to or has already occurred.
- Cracks: New cracks that appear on the wall or ceiling mean your building is under physical stress that could result in major damage.
- Doors: While doors and door jambs can expand and contract depending on the weather, if you can no longer easily close or open a door that was fine before a snowstorm, it could be under pressure from snow on the roof.
- Electrical problems: If your HVAC system quits working, it could be due to snow and/or ice. Fan blades can bend or break under the weight of layers of ice.
If necessary during the winter, we can remove heavy snow from your roof and make sure your drainage systems are not frozen shut or clogged with debris. We can also remove and unclog areas of ice that have caused dangerous icicle formation.
Prevention (and Inspection) Are the Best Preparations
That being said, the best preparations for wintry weather are prevention and inspection so that these problems don’t happen at all during the months of cold and snow. Winter is just around the corner, and the experienced team at Roberts Roofing can make sure you are ready to weather winter storms with an intact and healthy commercial building roof. We bring over 40 years of experience to every job.
Contact Roberts Roofing online to schedule your fall commercial roof inspection, or call us at 440-946-2233.