Here in the Midwest, we’re accustomed to the cold winter temperatures, howling winds, snow, and ice, but that doesn’t necessarily mean we like them! Our list of winter woes can be long and we certainly don’t need to add more problems to the list. Hence the reason it is so important to properly maintain and keep a vigil eye on your roof in the 2016 winter months.
The National Weather Service said that January 2015 was an exceptionally cold month around this area and 2016 isn’t looking much warmer. Last winter, a report on USAToday.com stated, “It’s been a brutally cold month across much of the nation’s northern tier… In Chicago, temperatures are about 10 degrees below average for the month, and the city is suffering through an even colder January than last year, during the infamous polar vortex…” There seems to be a pattern building here…
It’s not just the cold temperatures that are affecting us – and also affecting our roofs and the roofs of businesses throughout the area. Last year, it was the fluctuating jet stream that brought in warmer temperatures every so often, that caused additional trouble. Freeze-thaw conditions caused by the jet stream maneuvers (when the cold outside warms up and then suddenly drops again) can wreak havoc on roof systems, creating leaks. When it comes to roofing, whether temperatures are mild or cold, it seems that both are an issue.
Standing moisture on a roof system can also present problems. Just as constant contact with moisture is bad for windows and masonry, it can also be detrimental to roofing membrane and flashings. To prevent damage to your roofing system, it’s wise to keep an eye on your roof at all times and work to prevent excessive snow build-up when possible. Make sure roofing professionals remove the snow from your roof because we know proper roofing safety practices, and are experienced with roof system maintenance.
In addition to the snow, there is ice. Wherever it’s coming from, ice can damage your roofing system. Roof drains, gutters and flashing can all be damaged by icing and ice chunks falling from adjacent buildings. As a caution, make sure to be on the lookout for possible icing damage when the temperatures dip below the freezing point.
Today’s last blistering-cold winter weather concern related to roofing: if your roof needs a repair in the winter months, it’s possible that you might have to wait some time. Roofing repairs can’t always be attended to during the winter months as a direct result of extremely cold temperatures, snow, or moisture being present. Contact a roofing professional for their evaluation of the possibilities for repair. It will all depend on your specific roof system, the damage you have, the repair required, and, of course, the current winter weather conditions at that time.
Overall, the best possible solution is year-round maintenance of your roof. To be safe and smart, today is the perfect time to schedule a roof inspection for the worsening winter months, and fully address any damages from the last several. Being safe and smart with Knickerbocker is always a good idea – and it can keep you from adding to your list of winter woes!