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If you are awakened by unusual creaking and popping sounds from your roof on cold night, you are not alone. During the cold winter it is normal for homes to do this, it is just basic physics. The reason why these creaking and popping sounds are so loud can also be explained by physics. The cold dense air and the lack of activity in the night allows sound to travel farther and sound louder than it would during the day.
Here are two reasons that explain why your house makes creaking noises in cold winter nights.
According to physics, when matter is heated it expands and contracts when cooled. When the temperatures are low, the exposed building materials will rapidly shrink causing the noises as they rub against one another. Wood is porous and it will give moisture to the surrounding dry winter air hence accentuating their contracting and shrinking. Nails holding down the wood can contract and slip off the wood making a loud pinging sound. As the wood contracts and shrinks it rubs against one another causing the creaking sound.
When it is cold, water pipes will contract. When hot water passes through them, they will rapidly expand and these movements could cause the noises you hear in the basement. Water in the pipes will freeze in the cold weather. When water freezes it expands instead of contracting. When water expands in the contracting pipes it causes pressure that could lead to bursting pipes. When the pipes burst you will hear a loud popping sound.
Creaking sound in cold winter nights are nothing to be worried about. However, if the movements of the building materials cause damage to your roof, contact the roof repair experts at Premiere Roofing for unparalleled service.
Just want to thank you and your crew for the excellent job you did on my "sad" roof. It looks great & best of all, no leaks around the chimney. Bill was impressed with the post roof clean-up.