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Ice & Snow Can Damage Your Commercial & Residential Roofs. Is Your Chicago Area Roof Ready For The Thaw?

As the Chicago area is reminded once again, ice and snow can cause more than a few roofing headaches – particularly when significant accumulation is followed by periods of thawing and refreezing.  Even the best roof can fail with severe weather outbreaks, fallen trees, and other unexpected events. Ice that accumulates in valleys, sidewalls, flat roofs and gutters can cause many problems with leaks.  For businesses, a relatively small leak can interrupt operations, slow down workflow and result in equipment, structural and inventory damage.


Ice dams are some of the most destructive occurrences that can happen to a roof. Most roof problems that are caused by ice damming occur when the water cannot clear the roof and is drawn up through an opening by “capillary draw”. Sometimes the water will actually move uphill. Since ice most commonly forms at gutter lines, valleys, and garage / wall intersections, each of these areas represent ideal places for the water to collect.

You should never try to shovel or salt your roof. Safety is obviously the primary concern on an icy roof. In addition, the ice can actually freeze onto the roof shingles or flat roof, temporarily becoming part of the structure. By trying to physically remove the ice, the shingle tabs or flat roof material might break and create more avenues for water infiltration, not to mention additional roof damage. Rock salt, such as sodium chloride or calcium chloride, should not be thrown onto the roof because salt and chemicals that melt ice can cause the same damage to your roof is it does to road (asphalt) pavement.

Please contact Smart Roofing, Inc. at 847.797.0404 or if have any questions regarding these types of problems or need emergency leak service or emergency repairs.

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