Winter in the northern states means it’s colder than a well-digger’s bum, or the snow’s up to your waist, or both. Heavy snow can damage your roof, especially if the eaves weren’t properly designed to hold the extra weight. Also, if your roof isn’t getting enough ventilation, ice dams can form when the snow on the warm part of the roof melts and then re-freezes as it reaches the cooler eaves. You’d have to be nuts to climb on the roof to remove the snow, but you can remove it while standing safely on the ground — with a roof rake.
Garelick’s roof rake comes with “shingle saver” poly rollers that keep the blade from contacting the roof and damaging the shingles. Garelick makes the handle and the 7″ x 24″ blade from aluminum, so it’s lightweight — just imagine trying to lift and control a 21ft snow rake if it wasn’t. The handle comes in sections and snaps apart for easy transportation and storage.
I’ve owned this rake for as long as I’ve had my house. The overhang on my garage was constructed incorrectly, so anytime I get more than 6-12 inches of snow on my garage roof, I pull out the rake. It works as advertised — the rollers ride the roof, keeping the blade away from the shingles. This does leave about 1/2″ to an 1″ of snow on the roof, but the point isn’t to scrape it clean.
Even though the rake’s made from aluminum, it can be pretty unwieldy when it’s snapped together. The sections snap together with spring-loaded balls that do fit pretty solidly — when you lift the rake up towards the roof, the whole handle bows quite a bit, but the joints don’t flex.
Garelick’s roof rake will run you between $35 to $50 depending on whether you get the 16ft or 21ft handle.