Ice Dams

Ice Dams

An ice dam is a ridge of ice that forms at the edge of a roof and prevents melting snow (water) from draining off the roof. The water that backs up behind the dam can leak into a home and cause damage to walls, ceilings, insulation, and other areas.

What causes ice dams?

Snow on a roof whose surface is above 32°F will melt. As water flows down the roof, it reaches the portion of the roof that is below 32°F and freezes. Voila!—an ice dam.

The dam grows being fed by the melting snow above it. Dams are limited to the portions of the roof that are below 32°F. Water just above the ice dam remains a liquid. This water finds cracks and openings in the exterior roof covering and can flow into an attic space. And, of course, from the attic it can flow into exterior walls, through ceiling insulation, and may even stain interior ceiling finishes eventually.

Ice Dam Prevention

  1. Keep the roof temperature as close to the outside temperature as possible.
  2. Make sure your house & attic have proper Insulation and Roof Ventilation.
  3. Remove the snow from the roof using a Roof Rake.
  4. Install Icing Cables.

Ice Dam Removal

If ice damming is occurring, David Hazen Group can help you remove the snow and ice, and after analysis of your specific situation, give you suggestions on how to prevent future problems.