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Tips on how to prevent — or deal with — snow-water leakage

A Septagon Contracting crew clears a roof of snow. File Global News

Winnipeggers might have trouble preventing snow-water leaking in their homes this spring.

After weeks of heavy snowfall, water dripping from the ceiling and seeping through, newfound foundation cracks are just some of the issues homeowners might be facing.

“A lot of the calls that we get are ‘I’ve lived in my house for 10, 15, 20 years and I’ve never experienced anything like this,'” Daniel Pelland of Lansard Brother’s Roofing told 680 CJOB.

Read more: Tips on how to prevent (or deal with) frozen pipes

Pelland said calls for snow removal are the highest they’ve been in 10 years.

In terms of how to clear the snow from the roof, the expert recommendation is to call a professional, but there’s one thing homeowners can do safely on their own.

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“The only way that I would recommend to do it is from the ground with a roof rake and trim away the snow at the edges,” said Pelland.

“But I wouldn’t recommend that any Joe Homeowner go in climbing up on a ladder and up their roof.”

Read more: City preaching patience, clearing of massive Winnipeg snow piles expected to take weeks

To avoid water trickling into the basement, Abalon Construction’s general manager Gerry Bonham said homeowners should check on their drywall.

“You don’t want mold, mildew and all that,” said Bonham.

Read more: Warm weather in Winnipeg could wreak havoc on home foundations, expert warns

“You want to know what the heck’s going on. You don’t want somebody to go in there, dig out the wall,  waterproof it, and meanwhile it’s not even that problem, it’s a condensation problem.”

Click to play video: 'What homeowners should watch for with melting snow' What homeowners should watch for with melting snow
What homeowners should watch for with melting snow – Feb 7, 2022

Bonham recommended clearing snow away from the house and out of window wells. He also said to make sure the sump pumps are in working order.

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Read more: Here’s how much a flooded basement will cost Canadian homeowners

“If you got suspected areas where you see some cracks or you think is leaking … that’s the first place you’re going to want to take that snow and move it away.”

If nothing else, it’s never too late to prepare for the worst.

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“I tell people, make sure you have a Shop-Vac and some towels around you,” Bonham said.

According to Pelland, Winnipeggers can save themselves a lot of grief by being proactive in the future.

“Any time there’s six inches of snow, a good snowfall, clear the eaves away, clear around your skylights or your bathroom fan,” he said.

Read more: Manitoba drought wreaking havoc for homeowners

“Then we’re not dealing with a situation like we are right now, where everybody in the city is trying to get something done at the same time.”

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