WPS: Check meters, vents for deep snow
With heavy snow falling through the winter in many areas, WPS is getting a number of calls throughout its service area of customers raking or shoveling snow from roofs and causing damage to electric or natural gas meters. These can be potentially dangerous situations that include disruption of electric or gas service or gas leaks around damaged meters.
If customers decide to remove snow from roofs, they should take care not to have it fall in the area of electric or gas meters, WPS says. Also, as the sun rises higher it can cause melting of roof snow even at temperatures below freezing, causing the formation of icicles. Larger icicles that break and fall into meters can cause damage.
If a natural gas meter is snow covered, carefully remove the snow by gloved hand. Using a rake or shovel could damage the meter.
In addition, snow removed from roofs could also cause a blockage of through-the-wall vents for newer furnaces and water heaters. Even blowing and drifting of lighter snows can block vents. Blocking the vents could cause the equipment to operate inefficiently, which could cause a buildup of carbon monoxide, or shut off. It’s a good idea to check through-the-wall vents periodically during the snow season.