In a city like Calgary, where winter is a natural occurrence, it’s but normal to expect a huge amount of snow. According to weather reports, most winters in Calgary leave up to two inches of thick snow piled up all over. During extreme snowstorms, it can go as high as 4 inches or even more. As a homeowner, the first thing you need to be mindful of is your roofing. It acts as the first line of defense against external elements. In today’s blog entry, we’ll share with you the most valuable roof snow removal tips to help prolong the life of your residential roofing.

How Does Snow Affect Your Roof?

Before you even take necessary actions, it’s important to understand how snow affects your roof. When you spot snow sitting on the surface of your roof, it’s actually a good indication. It goes to show that the roof is doing its job – to shield the interior from snow penetration.

If you notice that the snow isn’t melting too quickly, it means the roofing is doing a good job preventing heat from finding its way out. The same heat that we’re talking about is also the culprit that could be harmful if it reaches the snow buildup. It causes the snow to freeze up and turn into what we can ice dams.

a roof with thick ice dam buildup

Ice dam formation appear to be crystal-like which can be harmful to your roofing and entire property.

Ice dams if left untreated can lead to different water damages such as leaks and stains. Because of their solid composition and weight, they could also potentially cause serious structural damages. Nobody wants to be bothered by these problems, thus, you have to watch out for snow and see if it’s time to remove them from the roof. Leaving them as is for a long time could increase the risk of having ice dams. These crystal-like formations may be a pretty sight to look at but could definitely be destructive.

Top 5 Practical Roof Snow Removal Tips

As a responsible homeowner, don’t wait for ice dams to form. Be proactive in implementing measures to keep it free from unwanted weight due to the snow buildup. While most roofing can withstand extreme weather including snowstorms, it doesn’t mean we can leave snow lying around for long.

To help you maintain the roof during post-winter seasons, here are some valuable roof snow removal tips that you can follow:

Check the Surroundings

If the snowstorm has passed and you’re starting to see clearer skies, it is a good sign that you can now step out of the house. However, it’s still best to wait for official announcements from the local city officials whether it’s already safe to come out or not.

neighborhood after a snowstorm

A neighborhood that accumulated thick amount of snow.

Once it’s advisable to leave your properties, be mindful of the surroundings. Even if you’re just eyeing to inspect the roof area, you also have to check the ground for debris. Note also that the floor could still be wet and slippery so be sure that you are aware of the situation to avoid getting into accidents.

Dress Appropriately

If you’ll notice, the first two tips are all about your own safety. While it’s good to be concerned about the elements of your house, it is also equally important to make sure that you wouldn’t hurt yourself in the process. To be able to check on your roofing’s situation, you have to dress appropriately. Wear the recommended attire complete with layers of clothes, a hat, gloves, and a pair of non-slip boots. Be extra careful because extremely freezing temperatures can trigger serious health issues like hypothermia and frostbite, among others.

Don’t Climb Up Immediately

Even if you feel like it’s easy to set up a ladder and climb up, it’s too dangerous. Given that it’s post-winter, there’s snow everywhere, it’s wet and also slippery. One of the most valuable roof snow removal tips that we can give you is to stay at ground level as much as possible. Besides, you can perform a visual inspection to at least get an idea of how much snow your roof has accumulated during the entire winter.

Don’t Scrape the Ice Entirely

Okay, so we have suggested that you better stay on the ground for your own safety. It doesn’t mean you cannot do anything for your roof. You can actually shave-off ice even from the ground as long as you can reach it high enough or at least some parts of it. However, if you’ll do this, never ever scrape the ice entirely. Make sure that your tool doesn’t reach the bottom part so that it won’t touch the roofing surface. We bet you guessed it right. There’s a high chance for you to create damages that could even worsen the situation.

Snow covering a roof

Here’s a photo of how snow looks on the roof.

Here’s the good news. You don’t really have to do it on your own. Professional roofing services is always a hundred times better than doing it all by yourself. If you’re worried about the added expenses, well, just think about the amount of money you’ll need if something happens to you or to your roof.

Use a Plastic Shovel

Plastic is the safest material that you can use to shave off layers of ice. The use of metal shovels or ice picks to increase the chance to damage your roofing permanently as it can cause dents and punctures. This could happen especially if you haven’t had any previous training or experience in removing ice from the roof. If you are unsure about this process, it’s always good to talk to a local roofing contractor beforehand. They can help simplify your life and also do your roofing a favor by eliminating the risks of unwanted damages.


There’s nothing to fear about snow or snowstorms if you’re confident about your roofing’s stability. It all boils down to how you keep your roofing in a good condition regardless of the weather or season. The only way to make this happen is by making sure that you schedule inspections and maintenance all year round.

We hope that the roof removal tips we’ve shared will be useful to all Calgary homeowners especially during post-winter. Keep in mind that it is still best to consult a professional roofing contractor to reduce health risks and prolong your roofing’s life.

If you’re looking for the best roof snow removal service, exceptional roofing solutions in Calgary AB, and for more roof snow removal tips, feel free to contact No Payne Roofing’s team for expert recommendations: 587 227 0517.