With the holidays right around the corner, you probably have a to-do list a mile long. With all of the things to do, it can be easy to forget about home maintenance. However, preventing ice dams and other such damage is a crucial part of keeping your home holiday ready.
Here is what you need to know about what ice dams even are, how they form, why they’re bad, and what you can do to prevent them. Let’s get into it.
What Are Ice Dams?
Ice dams are ridges of ice that form at the edges of your rooftops. They’re called ice dams because they essentially function as a dam by preventing melting snow from being able to drain off of your rooftops. This causes the water to back up behind the ice ridge, leading to all sorts of potential damage.
How Do Ice Dams Form?
We all know that heat rises. If your attic isn’t appropriately insulated and heat escapes through your roof unevenly, this can cause dams to form. When the higher parts of your roof are warmer than the lower parts, the snow melts and runs down, only to be dammed behind ice ridges.
Why Are Ice Dams Bad?
Nothings presents a picture-perfect holiday home like one with icicles hanging down from the rooftops and strings of lights illuminating the architecture. As such, you may be confused about why we’re telling you that ice dams are actually something to be concerned about. We get it – icicles certainly add a romantic element to your home, especially around the holidays.
But like so many romance novels, just because something is romanticized doesn’t mean it’s good. In fact, it could be horrible. And that’s what ice dams are for your home – damage and problems disguised in a pretty package.
As in the name, when ice forms a dam at the edge of your roof, this prevents melting snow from being able to drain off of it, the way that it should. When the water has nowhere else to go, it can end up leaking into your room.
This results in all sorts of different water damage, such as to your ceilings, your walls, your insulation, and more. Mold growth can occur. Debris, such as fallen leaves and sticks, can accumulate, trapping moisture, leading to rot. Plus, the weight of the dams can pull your gutters away from your home.
How To Prevent Home Ice Dams
So you see, if you love the look of icicles hanging down from your rooftops, you’re better off getting holiday lights that look like icicles rather than dealing with all the issues that real icicles bring with them.
Fortunately, you can stave off potential ice dams with the following preventative measures.
- Ensure your attic is airtight. This prevents issues like uneven roof temperatures that can contribute to damming.
- Remove snow from your roof. You can hire someone to do this for you, or if you know how to do this safely, you can do it with a roof rake or push broom.
- Correct heat loss. This can be tricky, as the best way to prevent heat loss is through quality installation of roofing systems, exhaust systems, and more. Checking the reviews of any contractors you work with and ensuring that they are licensed and insured is a good first step to ensure that you are working with people who know what they’re doing.
- Clean your gutters. This should be done twice a year, at least. If your gutters are clogged up with debris, water can’t drain from them the way it should. Obtaining gutter cleaning as needed is a crucial component of preventing damming.
The friendly professionals here at Above & Beyond are always happy to provide you with advice in order to ensure that you’re doing everything you can in order to keep your home in the best condition possible for as long as possible.
Protect Your Home With Above & Beyond
While window cleaning is in our name, we here at Above & Beyond Window Cleaning do more than that. We can help keep your home clean from rooftops to driveway with our comprehensive exterior cleaning services. We can also help you prevent ice dams with our professional gutter cleaning services. From pressure washing to gutter cleaning to window cleaning and more, we always strive to go above and beyond in everything that we do.
Contact us today to learn more about our exterior cleaning services in the Boston area.