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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Ice Dam - 02747

1/18/2021 (Permalink)

What is an ice dam?  “Ice dam” refers to ice that builds up on the lower edge of your home’s roof, preventing water or melting ice and snow from flowing into your gutters and downspouts. Since the water can’t flow off the roof harmlessly, it backs up, eventually finding its way into your home.  

Damage usually shows up as water leaking into rooms that are directly beneath the roof, or as water stains on your ceiling, walls and insulation

Ice dams are the result of temperature differences between the main sections of your roof and the roof’s lower edges or eaves.

Since hot air rises the heated air in our homes eventually escapes into the attic. From there, this warmer air melts the snow on the roof with the resulting water running down towards the gutter.

As water flows down the roof, it has a tendency to refreeze at the eaves forming ice which can trap future water flows. Eventually, this water may pool and back up onto the roof, causing the ruinous damage associated with ice dams.

If you live in New England, ice dams cannot be completely eliminated – the snow and cold see to that. You can, however, greatly reduce their onset and resulting damage by taking appropriate steps.

Since ice dams form because of the temperature differential between your attic and roof edges, make sure your attic is properly insulated.

MassSave recommends 18-20 inches of blown-in insulation. Not only will this save on heating and cooling costs, it will keep your attic – and, therefore, your roof – colder during the winter months.

If ice dams are found, immediately have the snow removed from the trouble spots. This is best left to a professional as this can be dangerous.  

If you suffer water damage from an ice dam, call us at SERVPRO of Dartmouth/New Bedford any time of day or night!  

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