All About Ice Dams

Ever wonder why every winter your roof is COVERED in ice and snow. There’s so many issues around ice dams. Let’s go over how they form and the common issues we see along with some solutions.

So ice dams build up on the edge of the roof, often freezing over the eavestrough. This happens when attic temperature isn’t regulated properly. Your roof needs to breath. Often it’s due to poor soffit ventilation causing the overhang portion to be cold, the attic heat melts the snow and ice it runs down the roof and it re freezes at the edge. This causes a whole bunch of problems. The ice will slowly melt and water will work its way under the shingles, past the underlayment cause leaks in your attic or leaking through your soffit. Bad stuff.

Not enough insulation and/or exhaust vents leaking. Poor insulation will cause ice dams due to all the heat from your house escaping to the attic, as well as and broken or leaking exhaust vents. Broken exhaust vents will heat up the attic and bring lots of moisture. Also an unsealed attic access will allow heat and moisture to enter and cause mold.

Ok so what can you do about ice dams? Check your attic access and seal it with weatherstripping. Also check your soffit to determine if you have enough or if you have any venting at all (many older homes have non). Check for and damaged or leaking exhaust vents. Check to see if you have enough insulation ontario building code states 22 to 28 inches is op

timal. Clear off your roof 2 feet past the overhang. Hope this helps, we get a lot of calls in winter months asking if we do repairs, leaking roof, leaking eavestrough, leaking fascia and so often it isn’t an issue with the roof or eavestrough at all. If you are unsure about you attic and ventilation give us a call we’d be happy to help.

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