Ice Damming

Icicles are a tell tale sign

Typically ice damming occurs when a buildup of snow accumulates on the roof (but can also occur around your foundation or even on your siding) and creates a dam where water from the snow melting can collect and find its way into your home, potentially causing thousands of dollars in damage.

  1. Carefully seal all ceiling penetrations (light fixtures etc.); to keep warm, moist air out of the attic.
  2. Ensure adequate attic ventilation (approx. 1sq.ft./200-300 sq.ft. of ceiling area); (no less than 50% at the gables or soffits, and no more than 50% through the roof);
  3. Ensure that soffit vents are not blocked by insulation. If loose fill/blown-in insulation tends to settle in the eaves, use 1/4inch plywood/panelling/aspenite to create barriers between the rafters/trusses. Prefab barriers are also available. A minimum insulating value of R20 (approx. 8 inches) is recommended.
  4. In new homes, roofing felt is applied from the edge of the roof to a point not less than 12″ inside the inner face of the exterior wall. In some localities this eaves protection must go 10 or 12 feet up the roof (especially on low-sloped roofs), and the full length of valleys.
  5. Try roof heater cables as an interim measure, until it’s time for new roofing materials. Don’t forget to point out the problem areas to your roofer, so he can provide adequate protection materials.

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