How To Prevent Ice Dams During the Winter

How To Prevent Ice Dams During the Winter

To prevent leaks and roof collapses during the winter, you must take measures to avoid ice dams. Ice dams refer to barriers of ice that form at the edge of a roof and prevent water from flowing off. As a result, the water from rain or melted snow will pool in the center of the roof and potentially seep through or cause the roof to collapse under the pressure. This may sound scary, but there’s no need to worry. Simply follow this guide on how to prevent ice dams during the winter, and your roof will stay safe and sound throughout the colder months of the year.

Upgrade Your Attic Insulation

One of the most effective ways to prevent ice dams from forming is to upgrade your attic’s insulation. In many cases, ice dams form as a result of warm air seeping out of the attic through the roof due to poor insulation. As the warm air escapes, it causes snow and ice on the roof to melt before refreezing again at the edge, where the surface is colder. Thus, an ice dam forms. By upgrading your attic’s insulation, you can prevent warm air from escaping through the roof and mitigate one of the most common causes of ice dams.

Increase Ventilation in Your Roof

Another tip on how to prevent ice dams during the winter is to increase your roof’s ventilation. Roof ventilation will draw in cold outside air and flush out warmer air in the attic. As a result, the roof will remain cooler so that the ice and snow on it doesn’t melt and form ice dams. To improve your roof’s ventilation, consider installing soffit vents and ventilation strips to the eaves. 

Seal Off Air Leaks

In addition to insulating your attic, it’s also important to properly seal off any air leaks in your home to prevent warm air from escaping through your roof. Common areas where air leaks occur include gaps around windows, chimney openings, cracks around light fixtures, unblocked walls, cracks in drywall, and the area between plumbing pipes and the roof. Locating and plugging such leaks can greatly reduce heat loss, which will prevent ice dams and lower your energy bill.

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