Repairing Ice Dam Damage: 6 Practical Steps To Permanent Recovery

In this article, we’ll be talking about ice dam damage repair, and what you can do to give your roof a permanent fix!

Ice Dam Damage Repair Guide

Snow and icicles on your roof can be compared to a wolf in sheep’s clothing. This is because they may look harmless, but they can be very dangerous.

The conditions that allowed the formation of the icicles can also facilitate the growth of ice dams. And when this happens, you will end up with a handful of structural repairs that can cost you thousands of dollars.

What Can Ice Dams Damage In Your Home?

As I have already mentioned, ice dams can cause a lot of damage to different parts of your home. The situation gets worse if the dams are unattended and grow bigger over time.

Let’s take a closer look at what ice dams can damage your home.

Gutters: Your gutters are vulnerable to ice dam damage, as this is one of the major areas where it begins to form.

As you can imagine, ice has a lot of weight, as it is hundreds of gallons of frozen water. Unfortunately, your gutters were not built to hold much weight, and it will only be a matter of time before it starts coming off their hinges.

Shingles: Ice dams can also loosen shingles, and this will cause water to back up and seep into your home.

Shingles aren’t as tough as you think, and they become even more fragile when frozen.

Your ceiling: When ice dams cause your roof to leak, the water will drip down into the ceiling. This is not good, as water can deform your ceiling boards and leave stains on them.

Wall paint: Your ceiling isn’t the only indoor part of your home that can be damaged by ice dams. This is because the water that seeps through will eventually flow down your walls and leave your paint messed up.

Your health: if you think ice dams can only damage your structure, then think again. Ice dams can also cause harm to your health, and I’ll explain how.

When melted ice seeps through the roof and flows to your ceilings and walls, they become damp and create the ideal environment for mold growth.

You may not know this, but mold spores are practically everywhere, including your home. The spores will settle once they find a damp and cozy place.

It has been medically proven that mold can cause different types of respiratory allergies. It is particularly harmful to those who already have respiratory issues such as asthma!

Implications Of Ice Dam Damage

Since ice dams can damage parts of your home, it ultimately means that the retail value has dropped. This is not good for those planning to sell their homes soon, as they will not be able to get the kind of money they want from it.

Potential buyers will be on the lookout for homes that are in order. So if you have just experienced ice dam damage, you will have to fix the following before you sell.

  • Roof shingles
  • Ceilings
  • Walls
  • Warped floors
  • Dislodged gutters

You will also have to remove any mold growth that has developed.

After these repairs are done your home will be in better shape and attract better offers.

Permanent Fixes For Ice Dams

Removing the problematic ice dam is one thing, but preventing a future build-up is another.

The trick to doing this is quite simple – Prevent ice dam formation by keeping your entire roof at the same temperature as the eave where the dams form.

Here’s what you can do to prevent further ice dam damage.

  1. Keep your eaves and ridges ventilated

Installing ridge vents is a good way to keep the temperature regulated. It is recommended that the openings on the ridge and vents have the same size.

They should also be a minimum of 1 sq. Ft opening per 300 sq. Ft of the attic floor.

You can also install baffles by the eaves, as this will maintain a good opening for airflow from the vents.

  1. Keep the hatch capped

If your attic hatch is open, then there will be a wide opening for heat to pass through. You can cover it with a weather-stripped cap to block the transfer of heat.

Use caps that are made with foil-faced foam. You can hold keep them in place with aluminum tape.

  1. Direct your exhausts outside

Ensure that the ducts linked to your bathroom, kitchen, and dryer vents are all directed outdoors.

You can channel them through your walls and even your roof.

  1. Use insulation

Adding extra insulation to your attic floor can retain the heat inside and prevent it from moving over to your roof.

Remember, if you allow the heat from your attic floor to escape to the roof, it will cause the roof snow to melt and refreeze on the cool eaves. And this is what causes ice dam formation in the first place.

  1. Use seal canned lights

The problem with old-fashioned recessed lights is that they produce too much heat. Also insulating them is a bad idea, as the excess heat can lead to a fire outbreak.

For this reason, you should replace the old heat-producing lights with the more effective canned lights. These lights can be insulated without any worry of a fire outbreak.

It will also retain the heat inside, which allows your roof to have an even, anti-ice dam temperature.

  1. Use flashes on your chimneys

You can close up the gap between your house framing and your chimney by using steel flashing.

You can hold the flashing in place with beads of fire-stop sealants.

Conclusion

Ice dam repair can run into thousands of dollars that could’ve been used for something more beneficial. If you’ve faced ice dam damage, then you have no choice but to do the fixes.

Just ensure you follow the tips provided in this article to prevent a repeat occurrence.

Good luck!

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