An ice dam is a common phenomenon on roofing in snowy areas. It happens due to the temperature difference between the inner and outer atmosphere of the house. Ice dams have the potential to cause serious damage to your house if you let them accumulate for a long time.
That is why we need to know how to prevent ice dams on roofing. There are some ways which being followed can help you prevent the accumulation of ice dams on your roof. But, these processes should be followed with caution. Otherwise, it may result in further damage to your roof, or personal injury may occur as well.
Why Ice Dams are Dangerous?
Developing ice dams on the roof can be dangerous for both the house and the residers of the house. The ice dam can cause injury to anyone who will try to clean up the snow from the roof. It may fall on them and being heavy will lead to head injury.
Ice dams ma creates pressure on the shingles of the roofing and loosen them. Waters from the ice dam then drip into your house wall cavity and interior through leaking. Besides, it can also tear off the gutter in the roof.
Leaking water from the ice dam may accumulate in the felt paper or insulation foam to develop mold or mildews. This will ultimately damage the wall structure as well. Moreover, the internal electrical connections can be exposed to the water leaking from the ice dams to cause accidents.
What Causes Ice Dams?
During cold weather, the insulators keep the internal airflow of a house warm by trapping the heat. The hot air travels to the roofing through faulty underlayments or other ways to the accumulated snow on top of the roof. The snow on that area starts to melt and moves to the lower edge of the roof.
The molten snow when reaches the area where the temperature is freezing again turns to ice. In this way, bigger ice dams are developed on the edge of the roofing. The development of ice dams on metal roofing exaggerates because metals are good conductors for transferring heat.
How to Prevent Ice Dams on Roofing?
In this section, we shall discuss different procedures to stop ice dams to develop on roofing.
1. Seal Air Leaks
Sealing the air pockets in the attic helps a lot to prevent ice dams. You can use stuffed bags with insulators to fill the gaps of the frame studs. Add as much insulator as required to seal the gap. It helps to stop the air from leaking to the roof.
Firstly remove the insulation from a dropped soffit. Use reflective foil or other blocking material such as tough foam. Then fill the stud cavities using a bead of caulk. You can use strong adhesive materials to seal it off perfectly.
2. Ensure Proper Insulation
The insulations used in the studs should be properly fitted. Using a high-quality insulator. Silica, rock wool, or slag wool insulators work well to trap the air.
You must follow the building code of that specific area to purchase the insulator foams. Make the cutting lengths and widths exact to leave no gaps between the stud space. This way the airflow regulates inside the house only and cannot escape through gaps of the roof.
3. Improve Ventilation of Your Attic Space
You can install Roof vents that are set at a roof’s peak. Airflow through the attic rises naturally from that space. This ensures warm, moist, or humid air able to escape easily. As a result, heat buildup is prevented to avoid condensation. Roof vents should be debris-free. You must inspect with regular intervals of time.
On the other hand, you can add the soffit vents to your roof. There are two types of soffit which are rectangular or continuous. These help to enter the outside air to the attic from below. Being coupled with the roof vent will result in easy and continuous airflow from and to the attic. Condensation due to temperature difference is thus halted.
4. Use Underlayment
Using good quality underlayments while setting up the roof works perfectly to stop ice dams. Synthetic felt paper or tar paper are the widely used roof underlayment. These create a bridge between the shingles and inner studs of the roof. Because of this, air from or to inside is stopped and thus prevents the accumulation of ice dams.
Professional Roof Repair & Gutter Repair Services Near Me
The roof repair experts at Roofers Birmingham can fix the water-damaged roofs. If your gutters have been damaged from ice dams, we can help with the necessary repairs. Taking the time to learn how to prevent ice dams on a roof will prevent costly damage. Contact us for an estimate today.