K5 Insurance 5 steps to Prevent Ice dams
Glistening beautiful icicles lining your roof are a sign of a destructive condition call ice damming. Ice is building up between the snow and your shingles, and sometimes between and underneath your shingles causing damage, leaks and wear.
Ice dams are often caused by either poor attic/roof ventilation or a clogged or poorly draining gutter system. Damage can extend past your shingles into the paint, insulation, siding and interior drywall.
Here are 5 tips to eliminate ice damming on your roof:
- Clean your gutters of all leaves and debris prior to the first snowfall. This will ensure that if we have an elusive warm spell, any moisture will travel out of the eaves troughs and away from your home. Clear snow from the roof as often as possible to keep it from melting into a mess on your roof. Small ice dams can be removed with ice melt.
- The most effective solution is to install a soffit-and-ridge vent system. This will create airflow on the underside of the roof, this makes the temperature on top of the roof against your shingles the same temperature as underneath, minimizing the melting of snow caused by a warm attic.
- Install soffit or gable vents for intake air and conventional roof vents to exhaust air. This free flow of air in the attic space brings it closer to the temperature outdoors.
- Check for active heat rejection into your attic. If you have warm air venting into your attic, no amount of ventilation will work to eliminate ice damming. Sealing air leaks in the ceiling and increasing attic floor insulation will decrease heat escaping into your attic.
- Installing heat tape can help in limited situations. During heavy snow, however it may cause ice damming further up on the roof.
Maintenance and prevention are vital to ensuring your home policy will cover you in the event of a claim. Be sure to do your part to prevent damage that may not be covered.