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Actionable tips on how to save a rooftop from ice dams?

Living in a snow-prone area offers splendid views and a lot of fun for the whole family. Everyone will find something to their liking, from epic snowball fights to snowmen building and skiing. However, the great time can be spoiled by roofing damages caused by ice dams. If you reside in an area ​where brutal winter prevails, like Minnesota, Alaska, Michigan, or North Dakota, you should take all actions to get your house ready for extreme cold. Start by preventing ice dams from forming on the roof and gutters as they can cause damage to your building and pose a risk to people walking under the eaves.

Actionable tips on how to save a rooftop from ice dams?

Table of contents

  1. What is an ice dam, and how does it occur?
  2. How to identify ice dams in your home?
  3. Ice dam prevention instruction
  4. The best ice dam solution - Get help from professional roofers

What is an ice dam and how does it occur?

Ice damming is an accumulation of excessive ice that may form at the roof's edge. It commonly occurs when the snow melts on the top, and the meltwater flows down to the eaves. As their name suggests, dams don't let the meltwater go into the gutters, promoting its accumulation under a snow layer and creating leaks, structural damages, and other issues. However, the most significant danger is the weight of snowy barriers - they are heavy enough to pull off gutters and damage the roof edge. 

To avoid major roof overhauls in the cold, every homeowner should be aware of the ways to stop ice dam damage. Keep reading to learn the fundamentals. 

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How to identify ice dams in your home?

It might be a warning sign if you see icicles on your roof. However, it does not necessarily mean your roof falls victim to dams. Check the amount and location of icicles. If they massively build up on the roof edges or behind gutters, it's an unmistakable sign of a roof ice dam. 

Another thing to watch for in winter is water stains on the ceiling. They indicate roof leaks that, in their turn, result from ice dams. You should address this issue immediately as water that runs inside can affect your house's integrity. 

Uneven snow melting on a roof might also point to dams. If you notice the spots where snow melts more extensively than others, consider inspecting your roof and taking preventative measures. 

Ice dam prevention instruction

Fall is the best time to take preventive measures against ice dams and other issues related to snow and cold. Don't let chilly weather catch you off guard by getting your roof ready before the first snowflake touches the ground.  

Here is how to prevent ice buildup on a metal roof:

  • Properly clean your gutters before winter. They can be overloaded with dirt and leaves that affect the way water flows down the roof. Proper inspection and repair are also necessary to prevent ice dam damage. 
  • Consider insulating the ceiling and roof. This way, you will ensure no warm air from the inside of the house flows into the attic space. The extra heat within the house makes the snow melt and creates ice dams. On top of that, make sure not to use any heating appliances close to the attic. While being too close to the roof, they produce heat that accelerates snow melting. 
  • Clean a rooftop from snow. The more often you remove snow, the more chances you will prevent water from accumulating on your rooftop. Ice dams cannot form when there is nothing to melt and freeze. 
  • Ensure adequate ventilation under the roofing surface. You need to keep the uniform temperature of your rooftop without overheated or cold places where snow melts excessively or stays frozen for a long time. Adequate airflow is what will help you to prevent ice dam roof damage.

The best ice dam solution - Get help from professional roofers

It's not recommended to perform any work on the roof without special equipment. Your DIY attempts may cost you serious injuries and house damage. Don't put your well-being at risk to save a few bucks. Ice dam removal or roof repairs related to it should be carried out by professional contractors who possess enough expertise in this area. 

It should not be a problem to find local roofing companies with HomeQuote. It only takes specifying your area and the needed service to connect with top local specialists. They offer a wide range of roof repairs, ensuring the work is done at the highest level. 

Count on HomeQuote for comfortable and trouble-free living, no matter the season.
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