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Addressing Ice Dams on Your Roof

Addressing Ice Dams on Your Roof.

Its winter and some people might be experiencing “Ice Dams” on their roof.  Ice dams can damage roofing material (asphalt or steel) and can lead to roof leaks.

Here are some general suggestions for addressing roof ice dams. However, it's important to note that fixing ice dams can sometimes be a complex task, and it might be advisable to consult with a professional if the issue is severe. Here are some general tips:

  1. Remove Snow: Use a roof rake to remove snow from the lower portion of your roof after each snowfall. This helps prevent the buildup of ice dams.

  1. Install Heated Cables: Electric heating cables can be installed along the roof's edge to melt ice dams. Make sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions and safety guidelines.

  1. Improve Attic Insulation: Proper insulation in the attic helps maintain a consistent temperature on the roof, reducing the likelihood of ice dams. Ensure adequate insulation and ventilation in the attic space.

  2. Ventilate the Attic: Proper attic ventilation helps regulate temperature and prevents the accumulation of warm air that can contribute to ice dams. Ensure that soffit and ridge vents are clear and functioning.

  3. Seal Air Leaks: Identify and seal any air leaks in the attic, such as gaps around light fixtures, vents, and chimneys. This helps prevent warm air from escaping and causing ice dams.

6. Use Ice Melt Products: Apply ice melt products, such as calcium chloride, on the ice dams. Avoid using rock salt, as it can damage the roof and vegetation.

  1. Create Channels for Water Drainage: Gently create channels through the ice to allow water to drain off the roof. Do this by melting the ice with a hose or filling a sock with ice melt and placing it strategically on the ice dam.

  2. Professional Help: If the problem persists or is severe, it's advisable to consult with a roofing professional or insulation contractor for a more comprehensive solution.

Remember, safety is a priority. If you are unsure about any of these methods or if the situation seems hazardous, it's best to seek professional assistance.


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