How Much Snow Can A Roof Hold? (2023 Winter Guide)
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How Much Snow Can a Roof Hold? (Winter Roof Guide)

Posted by Northface Construction

Ah, Minnesota winter. Love it, or hate it, there is truly nothing else like it. If there’s one thing that can make the bitter cold and dry winds feel tolerable, though, it is the beautiful snowfalls we get to see.

That said, no matter how beautiful it is, snow can be a hassle for homeowners to deal with. From excessive shoveling to icy walkways, you are probably familiar with lots of the challenges. However, it is possible that there is one struggle that you haven’t considered.

We’re talking about your roof. Sure, there are the typical winter roof hazards, such as:

But have you ever thought about the weight of snow on your roof? Today, we’re doing the math and answering your question: how much snow can a roof hold before it becomes dangerous? Keep reading to find out.

Is Snow on the Roof Dangerous?

how much snow can a roof hold dealing with buildup

Snow is so pretty that it is hard to think of it as a hazard to your roof. However, excessive snow can cause huge problems for you and your home.

There are a couple of different dangers to letting too much snow build up on your roof. Here are some of the top problems homeowners face.

3 Factors That Affect How Much Snow a Roof Can Hold

When it comes to determining how much snow your roof can hold before it becomes damaged, there are several factors that can affect that final calculation. Here are the top three things you should consider.

1) Weight

Not all snow is created equal. Fluffy snow can create a lot of volume while still weighing significantly less than other types of snow. Heavy wet snow, or packed snow, on the other hand, can be incredibly dense and much heavier than it looks.

2) Roof Material

how much snow can a roof hold metal roof material type

Different roof materials are able to hold different amounts of weight. For example, a standard asphalt shingle roof can typically hold around 20 pounds per square foot. However, roofs made from slate shingles or metal are likely going to be able to hold significantly more weight.

3) Roof Design

The last factor that affects the strength of your roof is the roof design itself. There are several design strategies that can be implemented to increase the strength of your roof. Adding trusses or strengthening the existing trusses can help your roof handle all the snow that winter can bring.

Total Snow Load

In general, if your roof snow loads equal more than 20 pounds per square foot, you might want to pull out your roof shovel to avoid risking damage to your roof.

What Should I Watch For?

how much snow can a roof hold lee[omg eue pm rooftop

It’s all well and good to say 20 pounds per square foot is the limit for how much snow you want on your roof. But most of us aren’t going to lug our scales outside to measure. What does too much snow look like? And what are the warning signs that your roof snow load is too heavy? Here are some key things to watch out for.

Winter Roof Maintenance

Want to protect your roof after it snows? Here are some of the best things to do.


how much snow can a roof hold shoveling off roof

If you live in Minnesota, we can’t stress the importance of investing in a good-quality roof shovel. These specialized shovels are designed to help you remove snow from your roof while staying safe on the ground.

Fall Roof Inspections

Want to make sure that your roof is able to handle the snow? We recommend scheduling your annual roof inspection for the fall. That way, you will be able to make any necessary repairs before the weather turns cold.

No Icicles

Icicles may be pretty, but if they are forming, it is likely because an ice dam is as well. Knocking off any icicles and making sure that the gutter is free of ice, as well, will help to keep your roof strong.

Protect Your Roof With The Pros

Feeling nervous about your roof’s ability to take on the winter weather? Our team at Northface Construction can help. As Minnesota’s roof experts, we can help assess the strength of your roof and devise solutions to help it last all year long. Contact us today to receive a free quote!


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