Robert Evans' Jr Blog

How To Prevent Ice Dams From Forming on Your Roof

Posted by Dan MacDonald on Nov 16, 2018 10:45:29 AM

If you have icicles along your eaves/overhangs, or ice collecting on your roof , Proper attic insulation may be the Key to help keep that frozen precipitation from building up .

Heavy snowfall can be a nice sight as it happens but there are a number of problems that can result from these storms. What do you do when you notice water pouring down the inside of your walls and the ice starts ripping off your gutters ? The key is to find a cure to the problem before it gets to this point .

Icicles form along the eaves/overhangs on your house as a result of a warm attic to heat loss through your poorly insulated ceiling . This causes the heat from the inside the house to melt the snow on the roof before the sun can melt the snow and it collects at the eaves, which are colder because there is no heat above the overhang.

Can icicles damage my house?

The result of icicles that develop along your eaves/overhangs is potential leaks inside your walls when the ice also builds up on the roof. This Buildup of ice and snow is called an Ice Dam.

The cure for this is a two-step. The heat loss can be stopped with proper insulation, usually standards are 13 inches of blown-in cellulose fiber insulation R49 is recommended.

The Other half of this cure is proper ventilation at eaves and at the ridge of the house. This is done by adding soffit vents and a quality ridge vent.

Your Insulation specialist should be able to recommend you on the number and lengths of vents needed . The typically recommended is 1 square foot of vent for every 150 sq. feet of attic space .

If you have ice dams that end up forming on your roof , best advise is to Hire a professional contractor to clear the ice , or you can risk doing considerable damage to your roof or even worse ,seriously injuring yourself .

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