How To Prevent Ice Dams This Winter

Ice Dams

With winter on its way in Massachusetts, there are plenty of homeowners who will very shortly be looking to rid their home’s roof of ice dams. Damaging and potentially dangerous, ice dams are a nightmare to deal with, and they can end up causing considerable damage if left to grow throughout the winter. If you’re interested in learning how you can protect your home from ice dams this fall with a bit of preventive maintenance, keep reading below for more information!

How Do Ice Dams Form

Before we discuss preventing & removing them, let’s first discuss how ice dams form! Ice dams are created from snow that melts off of your roof and refreezes in your gutters. Throughout the winter, snow will accumulate on your roof, building up with each snowfall. Heat will be continually escaping through your attic, warming your shingle system. This causes the snow to gradually melt, and run down your shingles. When it reaches your gutters, and is no longer being heated by your shingles & attic, the water will refreeze as ice in the gutter system. This process will repeat over and over throughout the winter, gradually building up. Eventually, if the ice dam gets large enough, it will begin to hold liquid water onto your roof, which can begin to seep under your shingles if it’s held on your roof. Eventually, ice dams can cause significant amounts of water damage to your roof deck & shingles, which means it is important to prevent ice dams whenever possible. If you’re interested in learning how to prevent ice dams, keep reading below!

How To Prevent Ice Dams

If you’re interested in preventing ice dams from occurring this winter, there are a few methods you can employ. The first thing you should do is assess your attic’s ventilation. Since ice dams are formed from heating escaping through your attic and heating your shingles, if you can mitigate the amount of heat that accumulates in the attic during the winter, you can prevent the snow from melting. You will first want to ensure that your attic is properly insulated. After adding as much insulation as you can, if your attic is still too warm, ensure that it has the proper ventilation. By ventilating your attic, you can bring cold air into the space, which will keep your shingles cool, and prevent the snow from melting!

If ventilation isn’t going to reduce your ice dams enough to alleviate the issue, you can also consider installing zinc strips to melt the ice, but this tends to be a last resort method for homeowners. Generally, ensuring that your attic has the proper ventilation will help keep snow frozen on your roof, rather than melting down it!

Contact Us Today

If you’re interested in replacing your home’s roof this fall, our team at E.M. Snow Inc. is ready to assist! Reach out to our team today by calling us at (781) 893-4546 or by filling out our team’s online contact form! We look forward to hearing from you and assisting with your roof replacement needs!