Ice dams are large accumulations of ice that form between the lower edge of your roof and the gutter. They occur when ice and snow melt and then refreeze at the edges of the roof where surface temperatures are colder. Ice dams prevent melted water from flowing into the gutters and off the roof. They can also allow water to build up behind them, which can lead to overflows and leaks that damage roofs and interior walls, as well as the inside of your building.
Here are some prevention tips that can keep ice dams from forming on your home:
- Remove snow. Keep your roof free of snow and ice after winter storms. Sweep or brush the snow away if possible, but take care not to damage the roof itself or the gutters.
- Seal air leaks. Ice dams occur when the temperature of the larger surface of the roof is warmer than the edges. Sealing air leaks in and around the roof will help even out temperatures across the roof and prevent warm spots where melting is likely to occur. A sealed roof will also be more energy efficient and help keep your indoor spaces more comfortable while reducing heating costs.
- Insulate roof and attic. Add an appropriate layer of insulation beneath the roof and in the attic. This will prevent the exterior surface of the roof from getting warm enough to melt snow and ice while also keeping heat energy in your home where it belongs.
- Improve ventilation. Install a soffit-to-ridge ventilation system. This will help cool the exterior surface of the roof. Use baffled ridge vents and make sure the vents are installed to run continuously along the length of your home’s roof.
For help ensuring your west suburban Boston home is well-equipped to handle the impending cold weather and prevent ice dams, contact Sage Builders LLC today.
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