Clearing snow from roof can avoid costly repairs - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Clearing snow from roof can avoid costly repairs

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While people were busy clearing up from the latest winter storm Friday, several crews were out taking snow off rooftops.

Workers from Adam Quenneville Roofing and Siding Inc. said it was important to get as much snow off as possible, especially since there was more precipitation in the forecast. Snow acts like a sponge and any rain only compounds the weight.

They also pointed out clearing ice dams can save on large repairs later. Water is forced under the shingles and into the attic and eventually the walls where it can cause mold. Clearing ice dams must be done with a delicate hand or more serious damage could occur.

Ron Reid, manager of Kelly-Fradet Lumber in East Longmeadow said a lot of people use the back side of a hammer to chip away ice, but striking shingles with the sharp edge could cause larger problems.

If homeowners were considering doing the work themselves, the experts recommended staying on the ground and using a roof rake to pull the snow down. Roof rakes can cost about $50 but the supply is small. Reid said roof rakes, salt and calcium were in short supply because of all the snow this winter.

Matthew Moreau and Ryan Brennan work for Adam Quenneville Roofing and part of their job requires removing snow. They said they would probably hit about a half dozen homes Friday and possibly more.

They said the snow falls where it may, but they avoid porches, doorways and big windows as much as possible and make sure they don't block furnace vents. They also recommended using a licensed and insured contractor to remove snow and ice.

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