In the winter, it’s not uncommon for snow, ice, and cold weather to cause accidents. Slips and falls on sidewalks and patios can lead to lawsuits and too much snow accumulation on roofs and awnings can cause them to collapse. Snow melt systems make it less likely for these types of accidents to happen.
Atomatic Mechanical Services can help install or replace snow melt systems throughout Chicagoland. Many commercial properties invest in these systems to keep their customers, employees, and tenants safe. Don’t leave your property’s safety up to chance. Invest in a quality snow melt system by calling Atomatic today.
How Do Snow Melt Systems Work?
Snow melt systems are a lot like radiant heating systems. Radiant heating systems are a type of heating system that heats materials like floors and walls and the heat is transferred into the space it is heating. Snow melt systems work similarly except that they are commonly built to withstand the outdoor elements and heat thicker materials to melt snow and ice.
Snow melt systems use electricity or heat water or air through pipes or radiant panels underneath the surface that it is trying to melt snow off of.
Where Should I Have Snow Melt Systems Installed?
There are a variety of uses and applications for snow melt systems. Some of the most common ones include:
Stairs, Walkways, and Ramps
To prevent slips and falls from occurring on your property, it’s a good idea to make sure that commonly trafficked outdoor areas are clear of snow and ice. When heavy snow accumulation happens on your property, it can be hard to keep up with shoveling. A snow melt system can ensure that your entryways are always safe.
Patios are very difficult for a plow to access, but they are large enough areas that shoveling can be burdensome. Keep your patio clear of snow and ice with a snow melt system.
Driveways and Parking Lots
Vehicles can slip and slide if they cannot get traction on icy surfaces. Parking lots and driveways cause accidents all the time when drivers cannot maintain control of their vehicles. Snowmelt systems are custom designed to fit any size surface you need.
Roof snow melt systems are commonly used in commercial or industrial buildings, such as warehouses or apartment buildings. These types of buildings commonly have large flat roofs where snow and ice accumulation can be significant. Roof snow melt systems typically use a combination of heating elements, insulation, and drainage systems to effectively melt snow and ice and prevent damage.
Materials Snow Melt Systems Can Heat
Snow melt systems can heat a variety of materials. When designing a snow melt system it’s important to keep in mind that certain types of materials can take more energy to heat than others. A snow melt system that covers a small area but is located under a thick material make takes just as much energy as a snow melt system that covers a large area under a thinner material. The regular amount of snow accumulation and desired operating temperature are also factors in determining which type of snow melt material should be used.
Some commonly used materials that are used for these systems are:
- Concrete: Concrete is a popular choice because it is durable and can easily be drilled to accommodate the heating elements of a snow melt system.
- Asphalt: Asphalt is often heated with snow melt systems to melt snow and ice from driveways and parking lots
- Pavers and Tiles: Pavers are interlocking blocks that can be used for patios, walkways, and driveways. Some snow melt systems can be installed between the pavers to heat the surface.
- Metal: Metal surfaces such as steel or aluminum that are often used for entryways, roofs, and ramps can be heated.
Signs You Should Replace Your Snow Melt System
One major advantage of radiant heating systems is they seldom need repairs. However, they do not last forever. The lifespan of a snow melt system on average is 15-20 years. If your system is older than that and you’ve noticed that you have high energy bills to run it and it’s still now melting ice and snow effectively, then it’s time to replace it.
Atomatic can inspect your current snow melt system and repair it if possible. However, it might save you money and anguish, in the long run, to have it replaced. This will ensure that it will work reliably for years to come.
Talk to Atomatic Mechanical Systems to Install A Snow Melt System at Your Chicagoland Area Home or Business
Atomatic Mechanical Services has an outstanding reputation in the Chicagoland area for quality commercial and residential HVAC repairs, installation, and maintenance. We’ve installed hundreds of snow melt systems throughout the area and we would be honored to install yours as well. Contact us today for an estimate on a new snow melt system for your home or business.