Snow! Snow! Snow! It seems to be all everyone is talking and thinking about. How can we help it? With still one more month to go in winter, we have already received between 60 to 70 inches of snow. By this point we are all experts in snow driving and snow clean-up. Our snow blowers are gassed up, shovels ready and salt is everywhere. Removing the snow from your roof is really important because of the formation of ice dams.
What is an Ice Dam?
As the snow sits on your roof, the heat from your home melts the snow. This water begins to run off the roof. As the water gets to the edge of the chilled roofline, some of the water freezes creating big ice blocks. These ice blocks or dams block the drainage system of the water off your roof. As a result the water doesn’t have anywhere to go and seeps into the roof. This can lead to leakage, mold and other types of water damage.
How do I remove an Ice Dam?
The easiest solution to this problem is to clear off your roof or at least the first three or four feet of snow at the edge of your roof, underneath the eaves. This allows the snow to melt freely without any interference. For tips on the best ways to remove snow from your roof, please click here to read a previous blog on the topic. Other experts suggest filling a sock or nylon stocking with calcium chloride ice melt. It should be placed vertically across the ice dam so it melts a channel. The calcium chloride salt melt should be using sparingly, as the melt can be corrosive to your roof and damage the shingles or the grass underneath your drain.
How can I prevent future dams from happening in the future?
Making sure your house is properly insulated is the first step in preventing ice dams. Although with extreme snow, even the most insulated homes are at risk. Another option is to install a water repellant membrane underneath the shingles when replacing or repairing your roof. This provides an extra barrier of protection.
I had an ice dam and now have damage to my home. What do I do?
Don’t panic! Your homeowner’s policy should cover damage to your roof or home. We are here to help you. Give us a call at 1.800.603.6434 or 401.725.8510.
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