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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    WI
    Posts
    112

    Default Roof rakes-needed?

    Just curious-I've lived in IL and WI my whole life. I've never needed, or know anybody who has needed,to rake the snow off their roof in the winter. I've noticed the last few years a lot people in my area raking the snow off their roof after every snowfall. WHY?
    I can see if we have one of those "once in a hundred year" wet heavy snowfalls,but how can having 12" or so of powder snow on a roof be a concern? If it were don't you think everybody's roof would have caved in over the years before everybody raked them?
    Is this just marketing by the rake manufacturers,or is this a concern?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    1,004

    Default Re: Roof rakes-needed?

    i can't speak for everyone and i've never used one myself but my thought would be that raking the snow off a roof would prevent ice damming. as the snow melts on the upper part of the roof due to improper insulation in the attic, the melting snow runs down the roof, under the snow pack and freezes over the eaves.

    about 2-3 years ago in massachusetts we had a huge ice dam problem everywhere. gutters were ripped off and eaves were damaged. i never noticed very many people using snow rakes prior to that and didn't even see them being sold anywhere. now they're sold everywhere and i see many people using them.

    maybe not the right answer but that's my thought.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,963

    Default Re: Roof rakes-needed?

    Quote Originally Posted by MLB Construction View Post
    i can't speak for everyone and i've never used one myself but my thought would be that raking the snow off a roof would prevent ice damming. as the snow melts on the upper part of the roof due to improper insulation in the attic, the melting snow runs down the roof, under the snow pack and freezes over the eaves.
    That would be my thought as well.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    31

    Default Re: Roof rakes-needed?

    It is probably for ICE damn prevention. They are mostly related to improper roof ventilation and insulation creating temperature differentials between the middle and edge of a roof that are enough to let snow melt and then re freeze at the edge of the roof. In some circumstances even when all that is squared away, depending on how different sections of roof are oriented towards the sunlight, there is still a possibility of them happening to one degree or another. A big clue that you might have a problem is if you see snow melting off your roof even when ambient temps are below freezing. This means that the snow is being melted by heat from the home and it's likely to re freeze at the edge of the roof. The water flows to the edge of the roof where it's colder and it'll come in contact with the cold metal of the gutters. If you get more than a foot, like 2-plus feet in a short period, people with high slope roofs could also be afraid some of the snow will slide off and weigh down the gutters.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    1,004

    Default Re: Roof rakes-needed?

    gee, why didn't i think of that

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