Snow brings beautiful, picture-perfect landscapes. The world looks like a perfect winter wonderland. However, snow can also be a headache for homeowners because, if you don’t have the right type of roof, you can end up with problems.
According to FEMA, a pound of fresh snow weighs at least 3 pounds per square foot and can heavy, wet snow can weigh up to 21 pounds per square foot. Most homes built in areas that are known to get snow have roof types that can handle 15 to 30 pounds per square foot. When it’s snowing, it can build up quickly where two slopes meet and in roof valleys. In addition, melting snow can result in ice dams, which are heavier than wet snow.
Therefore, it’s important to know the best type of roof for snow so that you can ensure that your roof can handle the extra weight during the winter. If you do notice that there are issues with your roof, call the experts at A&J Reliable. We can provide you with a free roof inspection and quote on repairing any issues you have.
Below we will explain the best roof shape, slope, and materials for heavy snow. This should help you gain a better understanding of whether your roof has what it takes to make it through the winter.
Best Roof Type: Shape
A roof with lots of slopes and valleys looks nice. However, when there are lots of valleys, snow can build up. Additionally, if you have a porch roof, gabled windows, chimneys, or a skylight, you may notice that these areas collect snowdrifts.
That being said, the best roof type shape for regions that experience heavy snow is a multi-span gable roof. This roof type has fewer areas that the snow can accumulate in, which means it’s more likely to slide off.
Best Roof Type: Slope
You probably already know that the steeper the slope of the roof, the easier the snow will slide off. This is why you see steeper slopes on buildings that experience heavy snowfall than in regions where snow rarely or never happens.
According to FEMA, the ideal slope of a roof is 30° or more. This will help prevent snow buildup on your roof. Of course, that doesn’t mean that snow isn’t going to fall off of a building with a slope of less than 30°, you just may need to use a roof rake, broom, or shovel to get it to fall off.
Best Roof Type: Material
Now that you know the ideal shape and slope for heavy snow, let’s take a look at the best material for a roof in a snow-prone area. This is the most debatable category of the three mentioned here. After all, there are so many options for roofing material on the market and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages.
When you are looking for a roofing material for your home that can handle heavy snowfall, there are a couple of factors that you need to consider. First, you need to find out about its durability in cold weather. Second, you need to look at its energy efficiency rating. This will help you determine if it’s a good roof type for snowfall.
In general, experts consider metal roofing to be the best roof type material for cold weather climates. After all, metal is resilient and can stand up to harsh temperature changes. Plus, it’s almost maintenance free.
A metal roof will protect your home against the weight of the snow. Since it’s slippery, the snow will slide off more easily. On the other hand, snow will stick to some of the other materials.
Some of the other popular roof type materials that can withstand heavy snow are:
- Composite shingles
- Asphalt shingles
Best Roof Type Overall
When you put them all together, you see that if you want a roof that will stand up against heavy snowfall, you need a multi-span metal gable roof that has a 30° pitch. This will help protect your home against damage due to snow and ice.
Call the experts at A&J Reliable for a roof inspection to help determine if your roof meets these standards or if you need to have some work done.