What is Freeze and Thaw?
Freeze and Thaw occurs when water seeps into tiny cracks and crevices in your roof, as it freezes it expands by nearly 10% causing extreme pressure on the material it infiltrates. When temperatures rise, the water melts and leaves behind a larger area for water to invade. Over time, this cycle can cause significant damage to the roof, leading to leaks, deterioration of the roofing material, and even structural damage – especially if the roof is not properly designed, constructed, or maintained.
Types of Roof Damage Caused by Freeze and Thaw
The freeze/thaw cycle causes shingles to expand and contract repeatedly, which can lead to cracking, splitting, or buckling. This damage can allow water to seep into your roof, causing leaks, mold and other problems. Metal roofing can expand and contract, which can cause fasteners to loosen and create gaps that allow water to seep in.
When snow on your roof melts due to warmer temperatures during the day, it can refreeze at night, creating ice dams. These ice dams can block drainage pathways, causing water to back up and potentially leak into your home.
Flashing is the material used to seal the joints and seams around your roof, such as at the chimney or skylights. Freezing and thawing weather can cause flashing to crack or pull away from the roof, allowing water to enter.
Gutters and downspouts:
Freeze and thaw weather can also damage your gutters and downspouts. Water that freezes in gutters can cause them to pull away from the roof or become misaligned, preventing proper drainage and causing water to leak into your home.
Protecting Your Roof From Freeze and Thaw Damage
To minimize the impact of freeze/thaw weather on your roof, it’s important to have regular roof inspections and maintenance. A professional roofer can identify any damage or potential problems and make repairs before they become more serious. Additionally, ensuring proper attic insulation and ventilation can help prevent ice dams and other issues caused by freeze/thaw weather.