Ice Dams: Preventing a Repeat of Last Year’s Disaster

If you weren’t living under a rock during last year’s record winter you probably heard about ice dams. Even if your home didn’t have them, chances are you knew someone who did. They were everywhere. Insurance companies and insureds were dealing with the water damage left in their wake long after the last of the snow had melted.

This year, before the snow and ice come there are some steps you can take to prevent ice dams before they start forming.

-Insulate your attic: Ice dams form when the upper part of your roof is warm enough to melt snow while the eaves are cold enough to freeze the runoff back to ice. The best way to prevent ice dams from forming is to eliminate heat escaping from the attic.

-Make sure your gutters and downspouts are clean – If your gutters are clogged snowmelt has trouble running off of your roof. Keeping your gutters clean is a cheap and easy way to prevent ice dams from forming.

-Ventilate your attic. Regulated air from heating ducts and bathroom vents, that release air through the attic, act as an unnecessary heat source. Proper ventilation will keep your attic temperature from rising starting the process of ice dams.

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