Ice Dam Prevention Tips
Ice dams. The two words strung together are enough to put fear in the heart of New Englanders, and rightfully so. Ice dams are caused by icicles and frozen water damaging the gutter and loosening shingles. The result is water backing up into the house which can leave behind extensive damage. The damage can be repaired by a team like the restoration professionals at Soil-Away, but the best course of action is to take the necessary steps to prevent ice dams from even forming.
It may be surprising, but a leading cause of ice dams is a warm roof. Snow melting off of the roof and then refreezing can be a big contributor. Taking some necessary steps to keep your roof colder can go a long way to reducing this risk.
Close attic gaps.
Much of a home’s heat is lost through gaps in the attic, from holes in the drywall and cracks around light fixtures to gaps around pipes and the chimney. Sealing up these leaks and fortifying the insulation in the attic can go a long way to keeping the heat inside, and the roof cooler.
Continuous air flow in the attic can cool the area and the roof. Adding roof and soffit vents can create the level of ventilation that you need to prevent ice dams, keeping the roof temperature cool.
Roof rakes can be effective in moving snow off of the roof before it has a chance to melt. After a large snowfall, take the time to remove as much snow as possible from the roof.
Keep gutters free of debris.
Cleaning gutters in the fall and early winter, removing leaves and other debris, can ensure that they are working properly. This reduces the risk of the gutter becoming clogged and causing a problem during the coldest winter months.
For homeowners that have experienced ice dams in the past, you may want to consider heated cables. These cables clip along the edge or the roof in zigzag patterns and can prevent ice dams from forming.
If you see an ice dam beginning to form, you can apply an ice melt product or calcium chloride to the ice.
The best course of action to prevent ice dams is to seal the home’s heat inside, particularly in the attic. Being vigilant to watch for any sign of ice dams forming early on can go a long way to minimizing the damage.
If your home is damaged by ice dams, the team at Soil-Away is ready to help. We are available 24/7, 365 days a year. Call 603-641-6555.