Minnesota springs bring beauty and relief, but they can also be rough on your roof. These solutions to common problems can take some of the stress out of the season.  Snow Melt If your roof isn’t vented properly, water can freeze in the gutters, encouraging additional snow melt to spill onto the walkways and freeze there. Until you can get a contractor to fix the issue, try these tips.

Put a box fan in your attic and aim it at the spot that gets hot. This normalizes the temperature and reduces the chance of snow melt in cold temperatures.

Run electric heating cables through your gutters. When the weather gets cold and snowy, turn them on to prevent freezing.  Shingle Roof Needs Replacement Survey your roof from the ground with a pair of binoculars for shingle damage. Look for multiple tiles that are lifted or curled and for smooth black areas where tiles once were.

To find leaks, head up to your attic on a sunny day, but keep the lights out. Once there, look for pin-pricks of light, which show where water is getting in. Also, look for any new water stains in the wood.

Protecting Storm Damaged Roof If you were unlucky enough to suffer storm damage to your roof, you’ll need to protect your home until it can be repaired. To do this, follow these steps:

1. Purchase a large woven plastic tarp and several 1X3 wood strips. 2. Roll one end of the tarp around one of the strips at least two times. 3. Screw the wood into the undamaged side of the roof. Make sure it’s snug enough to block any moisture and debris from gathering. 4. Drape the tarp over the ridge of your roof, and make sure it hangs a few feet past the damaged part. 5. Roll the other end around another wood strip and screw it down. 6. Anchor the rest of the strips along the edge of the tarp. These don’t need to be rolled in the plastic.

Spring can be hard on a home, but when you know how to deal with problems as they arise, you can start summer on a high note.

Your roof is the most important protective feature of your home's exterior - keeping it in top shape and catching minor problems before they turn into major repairs can help you preserve the investment you've made in your home.