In south Louisiana we are well accustomed to the preparations needed for a hurricane or rain and wind event. However, over the past few days our part of the country has seen a much different type of weather. “Polar Vortex” and “Snowmageddon” are becoming very popular terms. While schools and bridges are closed and your fireplace starts working overtime, there is something happening right over your head that could mean serious issues for your home as the temperature drops and as the ice, snow and sleet begin to thaw from your Baton Rouge roof.
While we likely won’t have any major accumulations to worry about, there are different problems that ice and cold temperatures can cause. Of course, when the temperature gets extremely hot or cold there is going to be a change in the physical characteristics of your roof’s materials. The shingles, flashing, vents and other elements will expand and contract based on the temperature. Well with the sub-freezing temperatures we’ll be experiencing, this could take a major toll on your roof, especially if there is already any existing damage. Shingles can crack, break and loosen granules can be worn away and different areas of your roof can begin to fail due to ice, wind and frigid conditions.
Another major issue is the forming of “ice dams”. If you see icicles hanging from your roof, this is a sign that there is an ice dam on your roof. This dam prevents water from reaching your gutters and leaving your roof, creating pools of ice and water that can seep into your home. Of course with our wet summer climate, the damage that leaks can cause can be substantial if left untreated. Ice dams can typically be caused by poor ventilation in your attic. Your warm house should be causing your roof to stay warm enough to melt ice and snow. Of course these ventilation issues also have an impact on your energy bills and can be a testament to the health of your roof.
As roofs become burdened with ice dams, icicles and snow it can cause damage to your gutter system as well. The prolonged weight that sits in gutters from either a blockage or ice can misalign your system, preventing it from effectively channeling water off of your roof and away from your home. This compromising of your gutters can cause further damage to the structure of your home creating foundation and other structural issues.
If you’ve been putting off a roof repair or replacement, this unexpected winter weather may speed up your need. Cribbs Incorporated has been taking care of Baton Rouge homes and roofs for over 50 years in all types of weather. If you have any concerns about how this weather has impacted your roof, call for a free estimate.