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How To Protect Your Roof From Nasty Ice Dams

Those sparkling icicles hanging from your roof can create quaint, beautiful winter scenes, but they could also be delivering a message. They can be a telltale sign that ice dams have formed on your roof, blocking the passage of melting snow and possibly causing damage to your roof and home’s structure.

Causes of Ice Dams

An ice dam is a buildup of ice that gathers along the lower edge of rooflines and prevents melting snow from running into your eavestroughs and away from your home. Ice dams form when three conditions are in place:

  • snow cover
  • heat loss through the roof
  • freezing outdoor temperatures

Poor ventilation and insulation allow warm air to escape and heat your roof. Snow on the upper part of the roof will melt because of the heat escaping from your home. The meltwater then flows until it hits a cooler area, usually the colder eave overhang where the freezing temperatures cause the water to refreeze. As more snow melts and refreezes in the same spot, the buildup forms an ice dam which blocks the runoff of further melted snow, forcing the melted snow to back up and under the roof shingle.

Ice Dams Can Damage Your Roof and Home

Ice dams can cause major problems if they soak the roof sheathing and leak into the attic. Once the water gets into your home, it can flow along the rafters, down walls, across ceilings, and even into the basement.

Water leakage can cause a host of other issues, including mold growth, damaged insulation, cracked foundations, and rotting of the roof deck, framing, and walls. Also, large ice dams weighing several hundreds of pounds can damage gutters, compromise the structure of the roof eaves, or even cause the roof to cave in.

Preventing Ice Dams Before They Form

Preventing ice dams is essential to ensure your home stays dry during snowy winters. It also gives you peace of mind knowing you won’t have to deal with costly winter weather damage. O’LYN”s de-icing systems provide an effective and economical method of combating and preventing ice dams from forming on your roof.

Heated roof-deicing cables on your roof and radiant edge systems along the edge of your roof prevent water and snow from freezing. They provide a clear path for melted water to flow off the roof and to the ground. These systems are suitable for various roofing materials.

Interested in learning more about how O’LYN’s de-icing systems can help protect your roofing system? Contact us today to schedule an appointment or receive an estimate. We look forward to assisting with your roofing needs!