How to prevent an ice dam?

In places with cold climates, not all snow on the roof is equal. Often, snow gets stuck on the edge of the roof, freezing at the edge and turning into an ice dam. When an ice dam forms, it can potentially cause a lot of damage to the house. Not only could it take off part of the house, but the water could leak in through the ceiling and cause leaks in different rooms in the house. If the damage is severe enough, the homeowner will need to spend lots of money on a professional to come and make repairs on the house.
If there is too much water leaking into the house, the house could start growing mold and mildew. If humans breathe in these tiny spores, they could get very sick. These lead to serious respiratory problems in the future.
If ice dams are caught early, the damage it caused could be prevented. But, if they’re not caught in time, an ice dam could give a homeowner a lot of stress in the cold weather.
What causes ice dams?
On different parts of the roof, the temperature is not equal. The higher up the snow is on the roof, the warmer the temperature there. If the snow is on a lower part of the roof, the temperature is much colder. As the snow on the upper level melts and trickles down to the lower part, it gets colder and the water can’t go farther. Eventually, the melted snow freezes back up again, forming the ice dam at the edge of the roof.
As more snow melts from the top of the roof, it goes to the dam and freezes up again, making the ice dam grow bigger and bigger as more ice accumulates. It causes a backup big enough that the melted snow will start to leak into the shingles on the roof and into the interior of the house, damaging walls and ceilings everywhere it goes.
Until the ice dam is taken care of, it has the potential to do a lot of damage to a home.
It’s important to note that most of the time the sun is not the cause of these ice dams. Lots of times, the snow is melting because of the heat in the home. In different parts of the home, heat is seeping out of the house, making the snow on those parts of the roof melt. So any potential heat loss is contributing to the buildup of ice dams.
How to prevent ice dams?
While you can call a professional or ventilate your roof to help get rid of ice dams, sometimes they’re not cheap or practical for you to do at that moment. One of the more popular ways to prevent ice dams is to install an electric heating cable in your home. This is relatively easy for anyone to do and is a cheap alternative to the more expensive solutions.
The heated cables are placed at the edge of the roof in a zigzag pattern. The purpose of the cables is to keep the edge of the roof heated enough so that no water can freeze at the edge of the roof to create the ice dams in the first place. Instead of freezing at the bottom of the roof, the water will stay melted and roll off the roof naturally.
To effectively prevent ice dams this winter, you’ll want to install the cables while it’s still warm. Place them in a zigzag pattern along the edge of your roof and gutters and clip them to the edge of the roof. After that, the heat will keep the roof warm enough that you won’t have an ice dam problem when the winter comes.
Heating cables are the fastest and the easiest way to prevent an ice dam before it happens. You can get a heating cable at any hardware store or on the internet You don’t need to hire a professional to come in and install them, either. With heating cables secured on your roof. you won’t need to worry about the damage you could be getting from an ice dam. It’s one less winter headache.

Leave a Reply