Ice Dams: How They Form and How to Prevent Them

By February 5, 2018Roofing

When there’s extreme cold snap across the country, it pays to know what can happen when your roof has amassed an abundance of ice and snow. It may have sustained damage that needs immediate repair, especially if the temperatures keep on fluctuating. Without taking proactive steps, ice dams may soon form along your eaves and cause damage inside and out.

Ice Dams

Ice dams are a pervasive and detrimental winter problem that leaves your home with multiple leaks, sagging gutters and other costly problems. Nomad Roofing, your top residential roofing contractor, explains how they form and offers some suggestions on how you can avoid them.

Ice Dam Formation

Ice dams form when the sun or the heat from the attic melts snow on the top portion of your roof. As that snow sits over unheated eaves, it doesn’t melt as quickly as the snow higher up on the roof. Meltwater then pools above it, which can seep through the roofing shingles and sheathing, and into your home. This leaves you with serious water damage.

Simple Ways to Prevent Them

Ice dams are caused by several factors, but the most common one is having poor attic ventilation and insulation. If you notice overheating in your attic, have a home energy audit done, and follow all the recommendations provided to you. Apart from improving your attic’s airflow and R-values, these may include professional roof repair services, insulation upgrade and HVAC system tune-ups.

If snow accumulates on your roof, don’t attempt to climb it. Instead, use a proper rake to get rid of it. You may also have a professional remove it promptly, which is the safer option. Without snow, there is no risk of ice dams.

To learn more about how ice dams can damage your home roofing system and get tips to avoid them, Nomad Roofing is always ready to assist you. You can also rely on us to keep your roof in the best condition so your home stays safe, energy efficient and comfortable. Call us today at (780) 686-8386 for more information. We serve Edmonton and nearby areas in Alberta.