Do You Have Ice Dams?

Do You Have Ice Dams?

The question this winter season is do you have an ice dam? Over the last couple of months, we have experienced some snowstorms and very cold temperatures. This has left snow on our roofs and the ground resulting in icicles hanging off of the home. Icicles can be a very scary and dangerous thing to have to hang off your roof and are not normal. At most, you should see a few icicles only a few inches long being more common on the north side of a roof where the sun can’t speed up the melting. Every winter, we always have customers who come to us worried about the massive icicles hanging off of their roof. The cause of this issue is heat loss/lack of insulation. Investing in proper insulation to solve the problem of ice dams is crucial in creating a safe and comfortable home.

ice dam infographic on home

What Is An Ice Dam?

Ice dams happen because melting snow pools behind dams of ice at the roof’s edge and leaks into the house. They form when melted snow refreezes at roof edges. The main problem is many homeowners don’t stop to understand why these ice bands form until they start damaging the home. In order for an ice dam to form, a combination of heat loss from the home, snow cover on the roof, and outside temperatures each take part. Ice dams can tear off gutters, loosen shingles, and cause water to back up and pour into the house.

Prevent An Ice Dam With Proper Insulation

Leaving ice dams on your house can be a scary and costly problem. To prevent Ice Dams, there are a few things you can do. You will want to keep the roof and attic as cold as possible to discourage melting. In order to prevent heat loss from the home, investing in proper insulation is key.

  1. Eliminate Air Leakage: Air leakage can happen through the ceiling by small gaps and cracks in drywall, light fixtures, plumbing pipes, chimneys, and more. The solution to this is Air Sealing. With Air Sealing, you will greatly reduce the amount of heat escaping your home.
  2. Invest In Attic Insulation: If your R-Value is below 8 inches, chances are you need more insulation. Blown-In Cellulose Insulation is the solution to your lack of attic insulation. Cellulose Insulation fills more tightly around rafters, joists, and other obstructions, leaving fewer gaps.
  3. Add Roof & Soffit Vents: Attic Ventilation draws in cold outdoor air and flushed out warmer attic air, cooling the attic and the roof.

Reach Out To An Ice Dam Professional Today

To eliminate the problem of ice dams, invest in a long term solution: Attic Insulation. There is no clear and simple answer to what is causing ice dams on your home but one thing is clear it can lead to damage to the exterior, interior, and foundation of your home. Here at Home Solutions, we have the home comfort you are looking for. Our complete home energy audit is designed to identify problem areas in your home, whether they’re in the attic, basement, around windows and doors, or in your ductwork. From Air Sealing to Cellulose Insulation, we can provide your Iowa home with the proper R-Value. Contact us today to get set up with a Home Performance Evaluation!

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