Facts About Ice Dams That You Need To Know

Facts About Ice Dams That You Need To Know

Many homeowners face different challenges every winter. With temperatures fluctuating above and below freezing along with increasing snow level on the roof results in having ice dams on the edge of their roof. The ice dams cause damage both on the outside and inside of the home.

What is an Ice Dam?

An ice dam is the build up of ice at the edge of a roof and in the gutter system which prevents melting ice from draining normally. The water that builds up behind the ice dam can seep into the house, causing damage to insulation, walls, ceilings, floors and other parts. Roof ice dam formation is common in areas that experience a build up of snow on the roof.

What causes ice dam formation?

Ice dams and roof ice are formed from the heat that escapes into the roof space or attic. The escaped heat builds up and melts the snow and ice on the roof surface. The melted water moves to the exposed edge of the roof and refreezes to form an ice dam. Factors like weather conditions, ventilation, home architecture, solar orientation, snow cover, tree coverage, and the lifestyle of the homeowner also contribute to ice dams on homes. The dammed up water may result in infiltration into the home leading to the formation of mold on the wall surfaces, the corrosion of metal fasteners, and decaying of structural framing.

How Can You Prevent future Ice Dam formation?

Your roof or ceiling insulation needs to be sufficient so as to minimize the loss of heat caused by conduction. It is very crucial that the ceiling is airtight to hinder the warm air from your home from moving into the attic or roof space. Insure that there are enough roof top and soffit vents to provide balanced ventilation.

What to do to prevent damage from an ice dam?

Once you think there is a problem, the next thing is to employ the services of a professional to help remove the snow and ice from the roof. It will help to eliminate the important cause of ice dam formation. The ice dam professionals also help to handle emergency situations like the flow of water into the home by creating channels through the ice dam to allow the drainage of the water. This channel is a temporary solution to ice dam damage because the channels are only effective for few days before refreezing. 

Edge Melt Systems ice dam prevention products are effectively designed to help protect your home from ice dams. These products can be installed in the locations on your home that suffer from ice dams.