Every winter, the repetitive cycle of snow arriving
Homeowners who experience heavy snow accumulations on their homes should be wary of excess stress to roof areas. If the snow is wet, it could possibly cause a collapse. However, there are a number of ways to avoid the winter freeze damage with snow melting systems.
Heat tapes and deicing cables are well used in states where snow accumulations are common. The manual version of this system must be plugged in, while the automatic system starts working when temperatures dip between 35 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
Available in a variety of lengths, from 30 to 150 feet long, heat tapes can be purchased at most home improvement stores. The average unit operates with 120 volts of electricity, but larger, industrial versions may need electric currents as high as 600 volts. These tapes are recommended for installation on the roof and in the gutters for maximum snow melt.
By using heat tape, you can avoid ice dams that form on the roof edge. Instead of freezing, melting snow will run freely along the gutter and down the spout. The end of the drain spout must also remain ice free, or it could cause water to back up, creating problems throughout the system.
The amount of tape you will need depends on the size of your roof, particularly the perimeter. When cables or tape is used on the roof's edge, it is often installed with either a loop or zigzag pattern. Special clips are supplied with the heat tape and for best results, the tape should be inserted into both the gutters and the downspout.
An alternate snow melting method to the cable system is heated panels, made of 100 percent recycled aluminum alloy, plus other environmentally friendly components. These panels use less energy and contribute to lowering the owner's carbon footprint.
Investing in efficient snow removal systems for your home will not only keep you and your family safer through the cold months, it will also preserve the condition of your roof and gutter system for years to come.