Roof Snow Removal, 3 Ways to Get the Snow off Your Roof

Winter is on the way, and with it comes snow and the possible damage it can cause to your roof.  There are certain times when removing snow from a roof is a good idea.  If the roof is not rated for heavy snow, it may be in danger of collapsing, though this happens on barns and pole buildings more than houses.  If your roof is prone to ice dams, then getting snow off of it before they can develop is best.  However, if ice dams occur on your roof, you also need to look into how to prevent them by adding insulation to your attic and other means. This Roofing Tutor article will look at roof snow removal.

There are very few good ways to remove snow from a roof.  Here are 3 ways to get snow off the roof.  The level of roof safety varies with each one.

1. A snow shovel or push broom

This is the most common way that  people remove snow from their roof.  You have to get on the roof for this method.  It should never be done on a second story and should never be done on a roof with greater than a 4/12 pitch.  If you choose this method, stop well short of the edge or the roof and remove the rest of the snow from the ground.  Also, always shovel from the top down, never up or sideways or you will almost certainly damage shingles.

2. A roof rake or similar tool

This is a safer way to remove snow, but it has its drawbacks as well.  Standing on the ground, or even on a ladder, pulling snow and ice toward you can cause an avalanche.  The weight of the snow and the hardness of ice and icicles can cause serious injury.  With a roof rake, work from the bottom toward the peak and only pull down small quantities of snow at a time.

3. Hire a pro to do it

If you have any concerns for your safety or are simply unable to do the work, call a roofing contractor.  The roofer will either be able to do the work for you or will be able to give you the name and phone number of someone who can.

We decided to add one more helpful solution to snow and ice buildup on your roof. Heat tape has been around for many years but it did not have a very long life. Every two or three years you would be back up there replacing it. Heat tape has come a long way and is far more dependable then in the past.

4. Install Heat Tape.

This will have to be done during the summer months but if you have problems with ice damns this year t may be worth the time and money to install heat tape next summer. Installing Heat tape is a fairly easy project that does not require special tools.


If your roof is in good condition and ice dams are not forming, you probably don’t need to remove snow from the roof.  However, when it is essential to clear the roof, extreme caution to prevent personal injury is the highest priority.  These 3 methods are your best ways to get snow off your roof this winter. Remember above all else be cautious and practice good roof safety measures at all times.

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