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Dealing With And Preventing Ice Dams

Have you noticed icicles forming on your roof? While they may look magical, you’re in for something more damaging if not taken care of…roof leakage. The culprit: ice dams.

 

What causes ice dams?

Most ice dam formation is due to poor attic insulation, or an aging or damaged roof. When winter storms dump snow, it piles up on roofs. If heat from the inside of your home is escaping through the roof, making the roof warmer than the outside temperature, the bottom layer of the snow will start to melt. On sloped roofs, the melting snow trickles and slides down the roof. The edges of the roof, however, are usually colder. When the melting snow reaches the colder edges, it freezes. Over time, a mound of ice builds up, weighing down gutters and creating a situation that encourages water damage.

 

Can an ice dam cause roof leakage?

The answer is yes. When the melting water runoff gets trapped behind the dam, it can start seeping into your roof, eventually working its way into the interior walls of your home. If not fixed, your home can begin to grow mould, causing visible staining and damage. Not to mention the impact this will have on the indoor air quality of your home.

 

How can you prevent ice dams?

The temporary fix is to keep your roof clear of snow by hiring a professional. Never attempt to climb onto your roof. To further prevent damage, have a roofing professional inspect your roof and your attic insulation to explore your options for ice dam prevention.

 

What to do if you currently have ice dams?

If ice dams have already formed on your roof, removing them safely and carefully without causing damage to your roof is extremely important. Follow these steps:

  • Do not stand under the icicles. 
  • Use a long enough pole to knock them down without causing personal injury.
  • Tap the icicles. Do not hit them with force.
  • Hire a professional to remove large icicles to ensure you don’t cause any damage to your roof.

We’re here to make sure you and your home are safe 24/7. If you experience any water damage due to ice dams or another reason, don’t hesitate to call us. The sooner the damage can be mitigated the better.

This WINMAR® franchise is independently owned and operated. WINMAR® is a registered trademark owned by WINMAR® International Inc. and is used under license.