If you are familiar with Minnesota winters, you have likely seen an ice dam before. Usually starting as small icicles hanging from the eaves or gutters, they quickly turn into dangerous ridges of ice that run along the roof’s overhang. In extreme dam conditions, you can have large icicles extending a foot or more from the roofline. Those icicles are attached to heavy ice sheets that could seriously injure someone. The weight of the falling ice can also pull gutters, soffit, facia, and shingles off the house when they break away. It is important to have ice dams removed and prevent them from recurring.
What Causes Ice Dams?
When the heat from your home escapes into the attic or rafters, it creates a warm spot. This causes the snow on the roof to melt, and the water runs down the shingles until it meets the cold eves. Once this happens, it refreezes and forms a small ridge. Every melt-freeze cycle increases the size of the ridge, eventually forcing the ice to back up onto the roof. This can force water under the shingles and into your home, damaging your ceilings and walls. You will see the water damage as brown stains on the ceilings or brown streaks on the walls. Your paint may also blister or peel.
What To Do When You Have an Ice Dam
Winter conditions make roof work very difficult, and it is dangerous for homeowners to remove ice dams on their own. Qualified, licensed contractors offer professional ice dam removal services that ensure your safety, protect your roof, and keep water out of your home.
You can ask your contractor about what steps you can take to prevent future ice dams. They may recommend one or more strategies depending on the type of roof you have, the age of your home, and the type of ductwork servicing the house. Some potential options are adding insulation, wrapping uninsulated ductwork and venting, cleaning the gutters, and adding gutter guards.
Choose a Professional Contractor
Choosing a CAM contractor will give you peace of mind knowing that other contractors trust them, are local to the area, and have excellent business ratings with a longtime presence in the area. By bringing in a reputable contractor, you are protecting yourself from liability issues and avoiding the dangers of falling ice. Never underestimate the dangers ice dams pose. Work with a professional to resolve the issue permanently.