Anybody living in the Black Hills, Rapid City, SD, and surrounding areas already knows how ferocious the weather here can be. Elements like wind ratings of around 110 MPH, snow, ice, storms, hail, and temperature fluctuations can beat and batter your home.
For your home to take that beating without significant damage, it’s important to weatherproof your home for all seasons. Let’s talk about the weather in the Black Hills, Rapid City, SD, and surrounding areas and offer some tips to help combat the elements.
Weather in the Black Hills, Rapid City, SD, and Surrounding Areas
According to the National Weather Service, the average first freeze can start from late August through September in the Black Hills and the first snowfall can occur as early as in October while continuing to fall as late as April.
In October, the expectation is high northwest winds. In November and December, each month averages about 5 inches of snow. In January and February, the average snowfall in each month is 15 inches with March and April’s averages being in the range of 8 to 25 inches, depending on if it’s in the northern or southern section of the Black Hills. Low temperatures in January and February can average 10° to 20° above zero.
Moving on into the May, June, July, and August months, extreme temperature fluctuations between cool mornings, hot days, and intense sun due to higher elevations are also weather elements your home has to endure.
So, how should you go about protecting your home from these weather elements?
How to Protect Roofs
The weather element to watch out for to protect your roof against is snow accumulation. Not so much that it may be too much snow for the roof to hold up under, but that the melted snow accumulation can create ice buildup or ice dams.
What are ice dams? Ice dams can occur when the sun comes out and melts the lowest layer of snow against the roof. The water, from that melting, runs into the gutters and freezes again.
The freezing ice, in the gutters and downspouts, causes a blockage that does not allow the remaining melted water to run off the roof, and instead, works its way back up the roof and under the shingles causing leaks into the ceiling and walls.
Here’s how you can avoid this weather problem:
- Insulate the attic
- Insert a water repellent layer under the shingles when building or replacing your roof
- Install deicing cables over the shingles of the roof, through the upper gutters, and down the downspouts.
- Clear tree branches from over the roof. The snow accumulation, partially frozen snow, or ice from tree branches can drop onto the roof causing damage.
What to do About the Gutters
- Make sure any detached gutters or downspouts are attached.
- Clear away any leaves, trash, or debris, so they can easily drain water away.
How to Weatherproof Windows and Doors
- Add weather stripping to doors.
- Apply film to the windows.
- Caulk around the window sills and door frames.
- If the weather stripping, film, or caulking is not enough to keep out the elements, replace the windows or doors.
Siding Defies Weather
- Install siding. Siding keeps out rain, snow, and high winds from inside the home and keeps heat in the home.
- Repair or replace the siding if it’s been damaged, warped, or has cracks and gaps.
Weatherproofing is critical when your home is facing the elements in the Black Hills, Rapid City, SD, and the surrounding region. To speak with a team member at Atlas Exteriors, contact us, your premier Rapid City residential roofing company!