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Design Tips for New Homes in Snowy Climates

Design Tips for New Homes in Snowy Climates

Design Tips for New Homes in Snowy Climates

If you are designing a new home in a climate that gets a lot of snow and ice, take the weather’s effect into your design considerations. When you consider different factors from the beginning, you will spend less time repairing your home, you may lower your energy bills, and you can rest assured that your family is safe and comfortable.  

Mitigating Snow Damage

Think about prevailing winds when you decide how you want to position your home on your lot. The main ridgeline of your home should face the prevailing wind, or you may discover that snow builds up on the leeward side. Think about a straight-sided gable roof as it handles snow, ice and rain better than other roof designs. Pick a roof with an average slope because flat roofs allow for snow accumulation while a lot of snow can fall off a roof with a big pitch all at once, causing further damage. Unheated overhangs are a natural place for ice dams to form, so try to avoid them. Think about using a standing seam metal roof as your roofing material as it handles the weather better than other options.  

Place Home Entryway’s Away From Prevailing Winds

A second important consideration is to place your home’s entryway on the side of your home opposite the prevailing winds. There are at least two reasons this will help. Your energy bills will be lower because your home will be more energy-efficient. Secondly, when you place the entryway under the side of the roof as opposed to the gable, people entering or exiting your home are less likely to be hit by falling snow.  


One of the most hotly debated topics by roofers in snowy areas is if homeowners should put gutters on a home. One side of the argument says that installing snow gutters helps the energy efficiency of the house. These gutters are uniquely designed to encourage snow to fall off the gutters. The other side of the argument says that when owners put gutters on a home, then more ice dams form. Ice dams can lead to water getting under your roof and entering your home. If you choose to use gutters, then choose sturdy metal ones with a deep curve.  

Stop Heat Flow to the Roof

You need to take three steps to prevent heat rising to your roof as this is hard on your roofing materials. Line your roof with insulation. Using efficient heating methods and stopping air leakage is also vital.  

If you live in the Baldwin, New York area, contact ICR Roofing Company to put on your new roof when the time comes. You will love working with these professionals who are fully licensed in New York. You will not find a more knowledgable or customer-orientated team to work with as roofing contractors in Baldwin, NY.