Experts warn to clear snow from roofs - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Experts warn to clear snow from roofs

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SAGINAW, MI (WNEM) -

Snow-covered rooftops can be a recipe for a costly winter disaster.

The white roof tops created by this weeks storm help paint the picture of a winter-wonderland, but the weight of the snow and ice, along with rain expected this weekend, could mean problems.

"It's crucial to get the snow off your roof right now, because it could turn to ice and back up and damage your roof," said Steve Labelle, who works for Lockhart Roofing.

Labelle spent Thursday clearing ice and snow off roofs.  He said the threat of water backing up because of ice dams on the roof, getting under shingles, and freezing can mean leaks and costly repair.

One of the biggest areas of concern is where the roof meets the wall. That's where ice and snow builds up, and that's where some of the first problems start. The snow and ice can potentially bend out the siding and that can cause leaks inside the home.

"I wouldn't have done it, I'm a widow lady now, so I really needed the help this time," said Barbara Bernard, who had her home cleared of snow on Thursday.

Bernard's Mt. Morris home was Labelle's last job of the day.

"I was scared to death that my whole ceiling was going to fall off on the side of the house, it was so jammed packed with snow and ice," said Bernard.

She said she saw snow build-up for the first time two days ago. That's why Labelle, who also happens to be her grandson, was here cleaning off her roof Thursday night. She said she'd rather be safe than sorry.

"He's doing a good job for me, and I'm really relieved, it takes a lot off my mind so I'm not worried about it," said Bernard.

If you need snow removed from your roof, you can of course call a professional.

But most hardware stores also sell roof rakes that you could use to clear some of the snow.  They will cost you about $50 but could save you a lot of money in the long run. Many local stores are currently sold out, so you might want to call and check before heading out.

Copyright 2014 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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