How to Safely Remove Snow from Your Roof



Did you know that Cleveland receives an average of 18.7 inches of snowfall in the month of January? We all know the impact that lake effect snow has on our day-to-day life, not to mention the impact it makes on keeping your home in tip-top shape.

However, there’s no denying that your roof takes the brunt of the impact when it comes to snowfall. When a significant amount of snow falls over Cleveland, it accumulates in your yard, driveway, and even your roof.

It’s easy enough to walk outside with a snow shovel or plow to clear your driveway, but what do you do if there is a pile of snow on top of your roof?

Have the right Tools on Hand

Be forewarned that ladders can be quite dangerous, especially in the winter when you add ice and snow into the mix. 

The best tools to use for roof snow removal include:

A safe and sturdy ladder

Long-handed snow rakes (best for freshly-fallen snow)

A plastic shovel 

A partner (for safety)

What Matters when Removing Snow

Removing snow is a bit different than your driveway. Plowing your driveway essentially involves clearing all evidence of snow. This isn’t necessarily your goal with roof snow removal—you’ll want to remove enough snow to relieve the excess load on the roof. There is no need to completely clear your roof from top to bottom.

Furthermore, be mindful of where the snow and ice falls when it’s pulled off of your roof. This can be very dangerous and you’ll want to give plenty of clearance for the snow to make its way off your roof.

Knowing when Snow Removal is Necessary

The good news is that you don’t need to climb up on your roof every time a snowflake falls. It helps to know when you need to worry about too much snow on your roof, since it keeps your feet safe on the ground until you absolutely need to take action.

It’s a good idea to remove snow from your roof when accumulation reaches about 6 inches. You don’t want to allow too much snow to accumulate, as this can result in ice dams—which opens another can of worms.

The Safest Way to Remove Snow

The safest way to remove snow from your roof is to hire a professional contractor. They have the right tools and experience to make sure that excessive snow loads are removed from your roof, and they can perform this task safely and efficiently.

Professional and insured contractors use tools such as extension ladders, anchored safety harnesses, and special snow gear.

There’s no avoiding snow in Cleveland, but staying prepared will help you keep your roof in tip top shape this winter.