An ice dam is a ridge of ice that forms along the edge of your roof. Ice dams form when the upper portion of the roof is a temperature higher than freezing, while the lower section of the roof is below freezing. The snow at the top of the roof melts, runs down the roof and then re-freezes along the roof line. These temperature differences on your roof are often caused by improper ventilation of your home. Frequent use of wood stoves and fireplaces, as well as inadequately insulated or leaky duct work, can all be factors contributing to the heat that can cause ice dams.
Problems Associated with Ice Dams
The layer of ice prevents melting snow or rain water from properly draining off your roof. That water then backs up on your roof behind the dam, and can cause a roof leak. Water damage to walls, ceilings, insulation and other areas is possible. In addition, moisture entering the home can lead to the growth of mold and mildew. The presence of mold and mildew can cause respiratory problems for your and your family.
To start, remove excess snow from your roof. Without snow to melt, there won't be water to re-freeze and form the ice dam. You can use a roof rake or push broom to remove heavy snow from your roof. (Use caution and never climb onto an icy roof.) The next step is to avoid heat loss from your home's attic area. By controlling heat loss, you can prevent the likelihood of ice dams forming on your roof. Make sure the ceiling of your home is air tight so no warm, moist air can flow from the house into the attic space. In addition, consider increasing the ceiling/roof insulation to cut down on heat loss by conduction. Natural roof ventilation can also help maintain uniform roof temperatures.
Our Lake of the Ozarks roofing company is here to ensure your roof isn't compromised by the winter weather. We provide free roof inspections as the Lake of the Ozarks, as well as free estimates for any repairs that may need to be completed. Give us a call at 573-302-0354 for all your Lake of the Ozarks roofing needs!
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