Ice Dams: What They Mean and What to Do about Them

By LaBrusciano Roofing & Exteriors,

  Filed under: Gutters, Roof Repair
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what ice dams mean and what to do about them Ice dams are a common sight in the winter. Many homeowners don’t know how they form, don’t realize how dangerous they are, and don’t know how to get rid of them or how to prevent them. Here is some important information about what ice dams mean and what to do about them.

What Are Ice Dams?

Ice dams are large blocks of ice that form at the edge of a roof and/or in the gutters. An ice dam forms when snow accumulates on the roof, warm air escapes from the attic and melts the snow, then the water flows to the edge of the roof and refreezes.

Why Are Ice Dams Problematic?

As more snow piles up and then melts, water can’t pass through the gutters because an ice dam is blocking the path. That water can instead leak beneath roofing shingles, which can result in structural damage and mold.

Ice dams can also cause problems because of their sheer size and weight. They can cause gutters to sag or fall down, which can damage the house, landscaping, or outdoor furniture. Gutters can also strike a person or pet, resulting in serious injuries, or even death.

When a house has an ice dam, it’s common to see icicles hanging from the edge of the roof. They can fall and injure someone or land on the ground and create a tripping hazard. If icicles melt and then refreeze, a driveway or sidewalk can turn into a sheet of ice that’s treacherous to walk on.

What Can You Do If Your House Has Ice Dams?

Don’t try to get rid of ice dams yourself. Many homeowners who tried breaking or chiseling away ice dams caused roof damage and/or injured themselves.

Professional roofers can safely remove ice dams and take measures to keep the problem from recurring in the future. Improving insulation and ventilation in the attic can keep warm air inside the house from melting snow on the roof, which is what causes ice dams to form.

Get an Estimate for Roof Repairs

If ice dams have damaged your roof or gutters, don’t take matters into your own hands. You can trust the professionals at LaBrusciano Roofing & Exteriors. We know what ice dams mean and what to do about them. Contact us today at (610)624-8850.