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View Poll Results: Shovel base of yurt or no?
Shovel all snow away from base 0 0%
Leave a base of snow for insulation 0 0%
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Shovel Base Of Yurt, Or No?

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Old 12-02-2019, 10:20 AM   #1
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Default Shovel base of yurt, or no?

Hi everyone, new to yurt living here.

I'm living in a yurt formerly inhabited by my parents for two years while they were building their house. I have moved in after finishing my 15 years of post grad training to help pay off student loans. This will be my first winter here. We live near the Canadian border, and get plenty of snow in the Winter months.

My question is this: Should I shovel snow off the deck at the base of the yurt? I understand the roof should stay clear for load-bearing reasons. My parents, though, are telling me I need to make sure to shovel all snow off the deck every time it snows (expected to be almost daily). I am reading elsewhere that a good snow load at the base actually serves to provide

insulation

. Which is it?

My mom would place old blankets and summer clothes all around the inside walls of the yurt for

insulation

in winter months. BUT, when I moved in, the wall bases had significant mold growth which I abated, and then painted with kilz and mold resistant paint. I believe the makeshift insulation likely contributed to the mold, and would like to avoid this.

So: shovel or no? Thanks for your input!

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Old 12-03-2019, 06:09 AM   #2
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Default Re: Shovel base of yurt, or no?

Without seeing pics of your setup, my guess is that the idea is once the snow melts, water could infiltrate the inside of the yurt as the snow is pushed right up against the wall like that. My yurt is elevated above the ground so that doesn't happen to mine.

Or it may be that the weight on the deck is a concern. Keep in mind that all the snow on the roof is going to fall around it, so a lot of weight will be concentrated into a small area.

Do you have electric? You can get a small electric snowblower that will make quick work of it. I have one of these for the deck at my house (which is rather large) because I got tired of shoveling it:

https://amzn.to/2sGMQjx
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Old 12-03-2019, 11:21 AM   #3
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Default Re: Shovel base of yurt, or no?

Thanks for the input. My yurt is elevated 30" above ground, with fully surrounding deck. I don't see any way fluid could leak in. My concern isn't the work it would take to shovel the snow. The question is whether or not leaving a base load of snow would actually be beneficial in providing additional insulation and wind shield for the winter months, or not. I have found another site that recommends packing the base around the perimeter, leaving space between the roof and base load to allow for the snow on the roof to slide off. This was only one site; not enough to make a case, although I have not found any that recommend shoveling snow away from the base. My googling hasn't found any answers, so I thought I would ask experienced users directly!
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Old 12-03-2019, 03:17 PM   #4
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Default Re: Shovel base of yurt, or no?

I suppose it could offer a wind barrier, but it won't stick directly to the yurt tight as the heat from inside will melt it back a bit.
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Old 12-03-2019, 07:21 PM   #5
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Default Re: Shovel base of yurt, or no?

Snow against your yurt cover is never a good thing. It's a cloth cover, not stucco or some painted siding. Snow DOES stop drafts but I want nothing wet laying against my canvas cover.

The bottom of the cover should be attached to the perimeter of the platform to eliminate drafts. Or, like mine, snugged tight to the frame with the lowest rope encircling the wall.

Keep the roof clear as well. Again, the snow is on cloth, not roofing materials. Even a 15 year cover should be kept as clear as possible for long life.
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Old Yesterday, 11:26 AM   #6
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Default Re: Shovel base of yurt, or no?

You are correct that the makeshift insulation did cause or contribute to the mold growth inside. This is because they retain

moisture

creating an ideal environment for mold or mildew spores to grow.

If your yurt's side cover is made of canvas (cotton or blended cotton fabric), it is best to keep snow from resting on the walls. If it is a high quality synthetic the snow will not likely harm the side cover. However, the weight of snow pushing inward on the lattice wall could be of concern if your walls are not reinforced with rafter supports (studs) that are well anchored to the rafters and floor.
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