Protecting Your Home Against Ice Dams

Much of the country is currently experiencing snow, freezing rain and ice. Some homes can be subject to “ice dams” building up on their roofs and gutters. Ice dams occur when the gutter gets clogged with snow, freezes and then the ice and snow back up under the roof shingles.  This causes damage to the roof shingles and may allow water to melt and leak through the roof and into the attic or other interior rooms of a home.

There are some fast fixes you can do if you get ice dams. Hitting them with a hammer or shovel is bad for roofing and dangerous to do. Salt will only cause harm to your roof. Throwing salt will only cause harm to your vegetation. Instead, place a box fan in the attic and aim it at the underside of the roof where the water is leaking in. The targeted does of cold air could freeze the water and stop the leak. It is also possible to fix it by raking it with a long-handled aluminum roof rake. Standing safely on the ground and raking will instantly change the exterior temperature of the roof without damaging the shingles.

To permanently fix ice dams, the entire roof needs to be the same temperature as the eaves. Some options to regulate the temperature can be increasing ventilation, adding insulation, and sealing off any air leaks that might warm the underside of the roof.

Protect your home from damage and resulting insurance claims by taking these few steps this winter against ice dams.