Posted October 18th, 2020 in Roofing Advice.

What to Consider Before Doing Roof Work in Cold Weather

What to Consider Before Doing Roof Work in Cold Weather

Does the thought of home repair work in the winter make you shiver? Are you anxious because you were not able to complete improvements over the summer? 

Did life take hold, and you now find you may need roof work in cold weather? Or has an unexpected leak broke, yet it is December? All of your fall maintenance might not prevent an emergency in the winter.

It is true most people complete necessary repairs in the spring and summer when the weather is ideal. Many opt to have roofs installed in the fall due to vacation or other commitments. Then some find themselves in a spot where the job needs to get done, but the winter season is suddenly upon us. Emergencies happen.

Is it okay to have a roof work in cold weather? What do you need to consider? Many people have questions and concerns regarding how roof and home repair work can be completed when it is winter.

Let the experts at Paramount Exteriors complete the job for you. Their experts understand that life can take hold and unexpected repairs become necessary. There is no need for fear, anxiety, or shame if you need to consult for a winter repair. 

Paramount Exteriors understands. We have experience in repairs in all types of weather, in every season. We put customers first, providing education and addressing your concerns. You are the priority, which is why we want you to know what you may need to consider before doing roof work in cold weather. 

Understand that Safety is a Factor

Frost on a tiled roof in cold weather

Only human beings can repair a roof. There are no robots or machines that can do the work in their place. There is always a concern if the crew is not comfortable, then corners may be cut to get the job done faster. 

If the weather is freezing or below 20 F, it will be uncomfortable for the crew, and the job may need to wait. Workers need to wear thin gloves and boots that allow for agility. Adding additional heavy gear can make roof work in cold weather impossible to complete. 

Also, precipitation makes the slope slippery, which is truly dangerous for the crew. If snow and ice have accumulated, it not only adds risk but additional work, which increases hazard and delays speed in completion. If they need to clear off snow and sleet, it will impact their ability to get the job done right.

Roofers do understand sometimes the job needs to get done and cannot be delayed. They have special winter gloves and footwear to make repairs in frost, freezing temps, and snow. Just be aware some work may need to wait for warmer winter days or when accumulation is minimal. 

Special Equipment May Be Used

roof shingles being applied with a nail gun

The roofing crew may need to use different tools when doing roof work in cold weather. Many tools, like compressors and nail guns, are affected by freezing temperatures. 

When you compress and release air in the system, the humidity turns into water. With freezing temperatures, water can freeze in the airlines, which reduces airflow the roof installer receives. 

Nails are installed flush with shingles. Installers need to be careful; it is not overdriven or underdriven. If airlines obstruct, nails may not push in as deep as necessary for proper installation. The crew must consistently monitor both the depth adjuster of the gun and humidity or ice, which adds pressure and time. 

Precautions are Necessary for Roof Work in Cold Weather

icy roof shingles

Crews can install shingles in cold weather, but the team must take precautions. 

Asphaltic material in shingles can lose flexibility and resistance in freezing temperatures. Resilient shingles make it difficult to bend them and cut them straight. Because they are more “brittle,” the shingles can break when driven by nails. 

Breakage is less likely now as companies use dual-layer shingles. So long as the crew places nails in the shingle’s dual-layer, the chance of nails blowing through reduces. The right pressure also assists in ensuring the shingles remain intact. 

Workers need to find the right adjustment with pressure. The pressure used reduces when completing roof work in cold weather. However, the right crew is aware of these limitations and can take steps to do the installation correctly. 

There is also the risk of shingles blowing off in cold weather. Shingles have a self-sealant strip, which is a line of glue. It activates with the sun and temperature, sealing the shingles together, which prevents the wind from blowing them off. 

Glues activate at different temperatures, dependent upon the manufacturer. If shingles do not seal properly, they can be hand sealed. The crew will apply roofing cement under each shingle with a caulking gun. Cementing prevents wind from lifting the shingles before the heat can sufficiently self-seal them. 

It also is helpful if shingles are adequately stored before installation. They should be stored flat until they are needed. 

Roof Work in Cold Weather is Genuinely Multifactorial

A team cleaning snow off of a roof

The manufacturer needs to make sure the product self-seals appropriately to the roof when activated. The contractor must make sure the crew is comfortable to work in the cold weather, and the equipment is working correctly. Finally, the crew leader is responsible for determining what cold weather precautions to take. 

Companies recognize there are situations where the seriousness of the roof condition is such it cannot wait. That said, it is safest and recommended to complete repairs when the temperature is above freezing. 

The Right Company Can Help Meet Your Needs

A construction team smiling

Experts will be honest if they can complete the work safely and effectively. You want to talk to a trusted professional who can help determine your repair needs. The professionals at Paramount Exteriors would be happy to complete a consultation. They will walk with you through necessary roof work in cold weather if you find yourself in a winter emergency! 

Contact Paramount Exteriors today!

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