How Snow and Ice Impact Roofs

Although Charlotte usually has mild winters, it’s that time of year when snow and ice could become an issue in our area. Your roof tends to get hit the hardest when snow and ice come around. Snow and ice damage on your roof can cause serious issues for your home–so be aware! Here are some ways that snow and ice negatively impact your roof:


During the frigid winter months, your roof suffers from the heavy weight of snow and ice, causing stress. In fact, the roof can cave in due to the accumulation of snowfall. Naturally, rainwater will flow to the lowest point of your roof, though once the temperature drops below freezing, this can form large ice blocks. As these large ice blocks increase with weight, the stress of the roof increases, also posing a higher risk of cave-ins.

Water Damage Freezing rain can seriously damage your roof. This is particularly problematic if ice builds up in your gutter and prevents water from draining properly from your roof. Extensive water damage can also occur if your area experiences heavy rain and the accumulated water gets under your shingles and into your home. Even just a few inches of water can cause extensive interior home damage by affecting electrical wiring and causing mold to grow inside the home. Both slanted and flat roofs are susceptible to water damage.

Ice Dams

If there is enough ice accumulating on the roof, it can form ice dams. This is caused by ice and snow melting, flowing down the roof and the freezing right at the edge of the roof. Ice dams can cause major gutter damage and may even tear the flashing off the roof.

Wind Damage Wind damage during the winter is not uncommon. Loose and/or old roof shingles can be blown off entirely by a blustery winter wind.This damage is compounded when the winter wind is accompanied by hail or sleet, as the small chunks of ice can weaken your shingles, allowing the wind to carry them off with greater ease.

Freeze and Thaw

Cracks in a roof can become a problem due to the accumulation of snow and ice. When water seeps into cracks (even tiny ones), this could pose a major issue for your roof. Not only can this cause leaks into your home, but the cracks can become much more prominent. If there is a crack in your roof and the water seeps in, a leak can be caused, resulting in damage to your roof and home. However, if the water doesn’t leak and it freezes, the crack can expand causing an increase in size. Even the smallest cracks can expand and can even cause the shingles to move causing even more leaks.

Throughout the Charlotte area, there’s no denying that winter can affect your roof. Take steps to protect your roof during the winter, such as removing any snow carefully yet quickly and checking your gutters regularly to ensure that water is draining properly.

At the same time, professional help is always available to ensure a roof is in good condition at all times. Jonas Independent Contracting offers roofing repair and replacement that is second to none. Contact us today at 704-956-0221.