If you live in a colder region of the nation, then you likely know when winter is coming. All the leaves have fallen from the trees, the night comes early and temperatures are dropping quickly. Whether you’re a fan of cold weather and snow or not – there’s one thing homeowners are on high alert for during this season – and that’s ice dams on the roof. If you’ve ever had ice dams before, then you know that they can cause a lot of damage to your roof.
An ice dam is a ridge of ice that forms over the edge of your roof, obstructing the gutters from draining properly. This can lead to damage to the shingles and insulation on your roof, as well as water damage inside your home or business.
To prevent ice dams from forming on your roof, follow these tips:
* Clean out gutters regularly during the fall to ensure they are clear during cold weather.
Gutters are designed to drain away water from your roof, but they can become clogged with debris and blockages over time. If you don’t routinely clean out your gutters, they may become full of leaves, twigs, or other debris that prevent water from draining properly—and that can lead to ice dams forming on top of them. In addition to ensuring the pitch is proper for the gutters, you should aim to clean your gutters at least twice a year by vacuuming out any debris or using a leaf blower if there’s not too much buildup inside them. If you have more than one story of your home (or if you’re concerned about falling risk), consider hiring someone else to do this for you; otherwise, use a ladder and brush attachment on an electric leaf blower. You can also use gutter guards to help stop some of the leaves from settling in the gutters.
* Have your roof inspected and heavy snow loads removed when needed.
If you’ve already had an ice dam problem, there are several steps you can take to repair it. First, remove any snow or ice from around your roofline so it doesn’t melt and refreeze in place. You may need a ladder to do this safely! Once you’ve removed any snow/ice buildup, go around your house with a garden hose and spray down any areas where water has collected (this will help prevent more ice dams).
*Check that your attic has the proper insulation.
Having the right amount of insulation in your attic will help keep heat inside and prevent ice dams from forming. There are many different types of attic insulation available, including batts and rolls of fiberglass. Whatever type you use, make sure it is the right size for your roof and has a high R-value.
Finally, call in a professional roofing contractor someone that will be able to resolve any persistent problems and ensure the structural integrity of your roof.
Need help with ice dams on your roof? Marquis Roofing provides emergency ice dam removal to prevent roof damage as well as snow removal to prevent roof collapse. Trained personnel will go up on your roof and remove the ice dams and the snow. This is a manual process and is done from ladders. Special heaters make removal quick. We can also figure out the root causes of your ice dams and cure them once and for all.