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Ice Dams on Roof Warning!

Don’t panic: Ice dams aren’t the end of the world. So what’s the best way to rid them from your roof? We have some prevention how to’s and causes of the dams. Over the past blizzard the northeast was hit with 2’+ of snow. Your roof takes a beating over the winter. Causes: Ice dams are at their worst especially in storms with little/no wind. Roofs are designed to handle lots of snow. If you think back to 2010 when the country had major ice dam issues; we were hit with many storms and cold temperatures over an extended period of time. Below is a diagram of how ice dams occur.

  • Snow on roof melts and penetrates roof structure.
  • Colder air at eaves, soffits and overhangs refreezes melted snow and ice. 
  • Water backs up and enters home, damages frame, walls, etc. 
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Prevention:
If you’re a DIY person and any kind of snow on your roof makes you nervous you should own a snow rake (available at Home Depot or Amazon). Snow rakes extend out approximately 20 feet and there are extensions available to build a rake of almost 40 feet and can be the best way to prevent ice dams and rid them from your roof.
  • Use your snow rake to clean the first 3-4′ of snow off your roof to expose it to the sun and prevent the build up of ice, which occurs when snow melts. 
  • If this isn’t working, make sure your soffit vents are clear (vents on the sides of your walls in the attic).
  • Keeping up with the snow should keep the ice dams away. Below is a picture of an snow rake.

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