Ice dams can form quickly, even before you even notice a problem. You walk out the door after a snow storm to find huge icicles dangling from the edge of your roof. In fact, did you know it only takes around two inches of snow to cause an ice dam if the conditions on your roof are right? Ice dams are the build-up of ice in your gutters and along your roof's eaves. They can cause a myriad of problems, from sagging gutters to water inside your home or business. It's important to prevent such dams from happening and if they do to deal with the problem quickly and efficiently.
So how do these dams form? Ice dams form when heated air escapes from your eaves and base of your roof which melts the snow as it gathers on your roof. When the resulting water gets far enough away from the escaping air, it freezes again as ice. This causes a blockage in your roof drainage system which causes additional snow and ice to build up behind it.
How Ice Dams Can Damage a Roof
Ice dams can damage your roof and water drainage system in a number of ways. For one thing, the additional weight caused by ice build-up can cause your gutters to sag or even come away from your structure. This extra weight also puts added stress on your eaves and the bottom of your roof. This added weight can cause gaps in the seal between the eaves and the roof, causing melted snow to enter your attic and seep behind the walls of your home or business.
Preventing ice dams
Ice dams are most often caused by inadequate attic insulation and/or gaps where the roof and the eaves come together. The most effective way to prevent ice dams is to make sure that your home is properly insulated and that you check for and fill any gaps along the roof line once a year. It's also a good idea to make sure your gutters are clear of debris and properly connected so that water doesn't accumulate in them and prevent the flow of melted snow down and away from your house.
What to do if You Have an Ice Dam
If you have an ice dam forming on your roof line, you want to take care of the problem quickly to avoid further damage to your roof, gutters, and interior of your home. This is not a DIY project. Prying ice off of the roof is not only dangerous, but can cause additional roof damage. If you're experiencing ice dams on your eaves and roof this winter, it's important to act quickly before water seeps into your attic and/or walls. This isn't a job you want to tackle yourself. Roofs are slippery and dangerous places this time of year. For a no-obligation quote call 739-ROOF to set up an appointment.