Ice dams may appear harmless – and may even look pretty – but they can cause damage to your home. Read on to learn how to remove ice dams and how to prevent them from forming in the first place.
What is an ice dam?
An ice dam is a wall of ice that forms at the edge of the roof, typically at the gutters or soffit, and prevents melting snow from draining off.
What causes ice dams?
For an ice dam to form, 3 things must be present:
Poor ventilation and temperature control in the attic can also cause ice dams. Excessive warm air in the attic can cause the snow on the roof to melt regardless of the temperature outside. Recessed lighting, skylights, complex roof designs and heating ducts in the attic can all increase the chances of an ice dam developing.
Do icicles mean that you have an ice dam?
In short, no. It’s common for small icicles to form; the larger, thicker icicles are the culprits. When you notice the larger icicles, it’s important to act fast in order to prevent damage.
What are the signs that you have an ice dam?
These are the most common, according to the Ice Dam Company:
What can ice dams damage?
If not addressed early, ice dam damage can be significant. Here’s how:
How to prevent ice dams:
Properly winterizing your roof is the best way to prevent ice dams. Consider these precautions.
How to remove ice dams:
If an ice dam has formed, here are immediate steps you can take to help prevent further damage.
If your home is prone to ice dams, it may be time to consider a new roof.
SPI Reflections Blog
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