Learn from the Roofing Pros – Icicles Should Hang in Trees NOT From Roofs!

Icicles are nice to see when they hang freely from the gutters of the roof of your house. They are stunning crystal decorations, aren’t they?

Nice to watch and wonderful to hold, yet they possess negative consequences – they are potential hazards to your house. Icicles can be the byproduct of ice dams that have resulted from an accumulation of ice that has formed on the edge of your roof or gutter.

This aftermath of the latest winter season is the danger of ice and snow buildup that has been left to homeowners across the United States.

Temperature Fluctuation

According to the National Weather Service (NWS), the forecast is that temperatures will be fluctuating rapidly from time to time. Temperatures have gone back up that were just a short while ago well below zero and yet can turn right around and drop again 20 to 30 degrees and go back below zero. This is particularly disturbing to households where ice dams have begun to build up on top of their roofs.

The National Weather Service (NWS) reported that the weather patterns have been changing since the beginning of this year. The owners of many roofing companies have said that everybody is going to have some ice build-up during this kind of weather. Ice damming is a Number One concern under these conditions.

Ice Dam Formation

Ice dams are a common low-temperature nuisance which occur when snow gathers on the inclined roofs of houses, especially those with inadequate attic or roof insulation. Air leaks known as ‘attic bypasses’ warm the roof and melt the snow. The water that develops from the melted ice will flow down the roof and into the gutter, causing the formation of ice dams that freely overhang depending upon the sub-freezing temperatures. Snow that falls after the formation of these sub-freezing ice conditions will prevent the proper drainage of ice in the eaves and gutters which can result in roof damage including rotting, leaking, and subsequent interior house damage.

Do’s and Don’ts

If ice dams are forming on your rooftop, don’t ever try to climb on your roof to remove this problem yourself as it is extremely dangerous to walk around on an icy roof. Hire licensed professionals to do this job for you.

To hinder the occurrence of ice dams, also don’t consider heating the roof since this is a primary cause of ice damming. The correct solution is to have good roofing. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) recommends that every household should seal ‘attic bypasses’, ensure that you have adequate insulation in the attic, check proper attic ventilation and clean gutters before snow starts to fall to prevent ice build-ups.

Don’t let ice damming happen to your roof this winter season. Then you can go out and enjoy your fun in the snow and maybe even the icicles hanging from tree limbs – not your house!