How Ice Dams Form and Why They’re Bad News

Ice dams are one of the worst things that will happen to your roof and gutters. Contrary to popular belief, the weather isn’t really to blame; rather, it’s a manifestation of attic and roof-ventilation problems. If you want to prevent these from happening, you need to address the source of those issues.

How Ice Dams Form and Why They’re Bad News

In this post, Exterior Source will discuss how ice dams form and how we can help you prevent them.

Ice Dams: How They Start

Ice dams form when hot air from the interior rises to the top-most part of the roof and melts the snow. Once it melts, this water runs down to the roof’s edges, where it usually refreezes because the lower part of the roof is much colder than the top. As a result, it adds excess weight onto your gutters and dams them, hence the name.

This is due to a problem with your attic ventilation, specifically because the underside of the roof is above 32 degrees. Poor ventilation allows heat to escape at only one point in the roof instead of dispersing heat equally throughout the structure.

Preventing Ice Dams

To minimize the amount of roof and gutter repair you’ll need to conduct every winter, you need to take steps to prevent ice dams from forming in the first place. The solution is as simple as creating a good airflow scheme in your attic, from the soffit to the ridge of the roof.

This will ensure that the space below the roof underside doesn’t increase in temperature as a result of trapped ambient heat. Keeping your attic space well-ventilated has other benefits, such as helping the rest of your home stay comfortable during winter.

At Exterior Source, we’ll be happy to do an in-depth inspection of your roof and attic space. We’ll also help with removing ice dams ad well as your gutter installation and maintenance needs.

homeowners may call us at (804) 275-5323 to learn more about our roofing services. For Tidewater Residents, call us at (757) 464-2060.

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