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Are icicles a sign of an ice dam on your roof?

I bet when you were a child, icicles were the highlight of your winter.

Throw them off the roof and nibble on them refreshingly or use them to spontaneously play sword fights with other children in the neighborhood.

Oh, those were the good old days.

Now that you’re an adult homeowner, icicles are less fun and more of a nightmare, especially considering that these glittering, festive-looking ice tips could be a sign of trouble.

Are icicles a sign of one Ice dam on your roof? You could be.

What is an ice dam?

An ice dam in a huge mass of ice that collects on the lower edges of a roof or in the roof Gutters. The formation of an ice dam takes place in several steps, namely:

  • After a snowfall, snow collects on the roof.
  • The heat from the attic heats the roof surface, but this heat does not reach the eaves.
  • Snow melts warm Roof area and flows to the edges of the roof.
  • The melted water freezes again on the cold roof edges and first creates icicles, which then develop into a thick layer of ice along the roof edge.
  • This layer of ice can become thick enough to be an ice dam.

While icicles on the roof edge can be a warning sign, icicles can also form without an ice dam.

At the same time, ice dams can also form without large icicles on the ice top, roof.

Why should you worry about icicles and ice dams?

It all seems pretty harmless. Why are icicles such a big problem for homeowners?

Now how Canopy Austin tx When an ice dam forms, meltwater from the warm roof behind the dam can accumulate and force it to flow under the shingles to get into your house.

In this case you will a Leak in the atticAmong other things, this can lead to mold formation, damaged insulation and structural damage.

At the same time, the weight of ice dams and heavy icicles could be higher than the roof should support.

If the check box is not selected, the weight can damage the structural integrity of your roof and lead to errors that can cause the roof to collapse or the gutters to fall.

A large icicle could also come off and fall directly onto the windshield of a vehicle parked underneath or onto someone walking by, which can cause cuts and even vibrations.

Telltale signs that you have an ice dam

  • Formation of large icicles along the roof edge. Small icicles are usually harmless.
  • Water drips from the gutter or reveal.
  • Worn or faded shingles along the overhang.
  • See ice where it shouldn’t, that is, on the edges of your roof, behind your gutters or through the reveal.

How to remove icicles

You can carefully knock small icicles off your roof edge before they can get bigger.

The same could be done for large icicles. However, use a wooden stick to increase your range, and never stand directly under an ice formation while removing the icicle.

If you need a ladder, be careful not to support it against one icy roof or gutter.

How to deal with ice dams

You immediately notice that something is wrong; You might be tempted to take a chisel or shovel and hack yourself at the ice dam.

Well not. This approach is not only dangerous for you, but also harmful for your roof.

Never try to walk on your ice snow covered roof.

If you have a sloping roof instead, use a long-handled rake to pull snow off the roof. A rake with wheels does not damage the roof surface.

For flat roofs and roofs with a low pitch, you can use a brush with stiff bristles.

Avoid using salt or other ice melting products on your roof. These can damage both your shingles and your plants.

Alternatively, you can create channels in the ice dams to make it easier to drain the water. Use your garden hose while standing on the floor and spray warm water up from the eaves.

Assume that the ice dam has already caused a leak in your attic. You could blow cold air in with a box fan that faces the underside of the roof, where water is actively entering. This will freeze the traces of the water and prevent further seepage.

After that, make sure you keep them Attic cold and well ventilated. The colder your attic is, the less it melts and freezes on your roof.