home with icicles hanging on edge because of ice dams
Roof Installation Roof Repair

What Causes Ice Dams?

,We get quite a few calls during the harsh winter weather to remove ice dams from roofs, but how do you prevent ice dams? That is the easiest way to not have to deal with them. And since every winter there is the likelihood that harsh weather will strike our local region, it is best to prevent ice damming with a properly installed roof and insulation. 

What is an Ice Dam? 

An ice dam is a large frozen chunk of ice along the edge of your roof and gutters that has clogged up your normal water drainage system on your roof. And the moment you notice large icicles hanging off the edge of your roof, or gutters, you are likely dealing with an ice dam.

roofers ladder to remove snow and ice because of ice dams

When the ice dam blocks the flow of water from exiting your roof and gutters, it creates a scenario for greater amounts of ice to buildup and flow into the interior of your home. This is because the water that is melting off of your roof is completely blocked from exiting the edge of your roof and gutters. The more the snow melts at the higher elevations of your roof and flows down and refreezes, the greater the ice buildup. 

Some of that water flow will hit the ice dam and buildup around the edges of your roof as ice, and some won’t. Consequently, a lot of that water that doesn’t freeze will begin to seep underneath your shingles and flow into your attic and damage the interior of your home. Thus, the water flow into your home may be extensive and severely damaging. 

Ice dams can ruin the sheathing underneath your shingles, your ceilings, interior walls, and depending on how great the flow of water is, your floors as well. Hence, it can be a nightmare to cleanup, and the cost of a roof repair can be extensive and very inconvenient. 

What Causes Ice Dams?

edge of roof with ice dams

Roof Ventilation

The first thing you want to check for is proper attic ventilation. A roof that doesn’t breathe properly is a roof that gets very hot in the summertime and doesn’t get cold enough in the winter. During the winter, if consistent cold air from the outside is not flowing underneath your roof through the attic vents and soffit vents (installed on the underside of your home’s eaves), the underside of your roof may not stay cold enough. Accordingly, this will cause the snow and ice to melt on your roof and increase the flow of water toward the edges of your roof.  

Attic Insulation

Poor insulation is a likely cause of ice damming. Many homes have insulation that settles over time and  need to have additional insulation blow in. Filling your attic with the proper levels of insulation will prevent heat from escaping your home and prevent the snow from melting off of your roof too quickly. 

A newer home doesn’t necessarily mean that the proper amount of insulation was blown into your attic. You would need to have an inspection of your attic to determine that the proper levels of insulation are there. You can do this personally, or hire a qualified attic insulation company. 

Increasing the levels of insulation in your attic will reduce the likelihood of heat escape from your home. Consequently, this will reduce the likelihood of ice damming occurring, and your home will be more energy efficient. In other words, you will save money on energy bills, and you are more likely to prevent ice dams. 

Absolute Assurance Restorations is one of the top rated roofing company in Mansfield, Ohio. When it comes to your home, search for the best roofing companies Mansfield Ohio. Our list of services is extensive and we are always willing to help you when you need it. We do roof repair and replacement on shingles, slate roofing, metal roofing, rubber roofing and flat roofing. 

We are also one of the top rated siding contractors in the region. And we provide skylight contractors services, windows installations and gutters.

Contact us for a free estimate. (419) 709-7223.

Roofers in Mansfield Ohio

120 Sturges Ave Suite 8
Mansfield 44903
Phone: (419) 709-7223

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