What Causes Ice Dams?

Jan 03 2020

Ice dams can secretly be ruining your home. Stay safe and knowledgeable about ice dams to help keep your winter cozy and warm.

Infographic about ice dams

Don’t let ice dams ruin your cozy winter and your home this year! Minnesota is known for it’s cold and snowy winters. Make sure you understand what ice dams are and how to prevent them to keep your home and family safe!

We have some great information if you have questions about ice dams, what causes them, signs you might have them on your roof, and how to prevent them!

What Causes an Ice Dam?

Ice dams occur when melted snow from the warmth of your home collects in gutters and freezes. As the snow continues to melt and freeze on the eaves of your roof, it will grow to form a dam as the ice traps the melted water on the roof under a blanket of snow. This blanket of snow can make ice dams hard to detect. The sitting water can then begin leaking into your home if left there long enough. This can cause major water damage to your roof, ceiling, walls, and insulation.

Signs You Might Have Ice Dams

There are signs of ice dams that you’ll want to keep your eye out for during the winter months. They can be difficult to spot from the ground so pay attention and remember signs you’ve seen before to help detect ice dams. Here are some things that can cause an ice dam to begin forming:

  • Previous problems or signs from ice dams
  • Water dripping down the interior or even the exterior of your home
  • Large amounts of snow piles on your roof
  • Icicles forming along the edge of your roof
  • The roof gutter is filled with ice
  • The attic is inadequately ventilated or insulated

If you see any of these signs, you should contact a professional to come and inspect your roof to make sure your home will be safe winter.

The Perfect Conditions For Ice Dams

Cold and wet conditions create the perfect home for ice dams on top of your roof. If you live in Minnesota, you’ll want to keep an eye on your house especially if your roof temperature rises above 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Here are some Minnesota climate conditions that make the perfect ice dam on top of your home.

  • The average snowfall in Northwest Minnesota reaches up to 70 inches or more per year, while Southwest Minnesota gets up to 35 inches per year.
  • In Northern Minnesota the average temperature in the wintertime is only eight degrees Fahrenheit. Southern Minnesota gets up to about 18 degrees Fahrenheit.

The warm roof, large amounts of snow, and cold temperatures make Minnesota the perfect place for ice dams to form.

These cold and wet weather conditions make staying inside nice and comfortable, however, you’ll want to make sure you take the appropriate preventative measures to make sure when your heater is on it won’t heat the snow on top of your roof.

Prevent Ice Dams

With most natural disasters, preventative measures can help keep you and your home safe. There are a few things that you can do to prevent ice dams, the most important of which is contacting a professional like Rapid Restoration -DKI to inspect and secure your home from potential damage that may occur.

It’s good to have a checklist of things to do to prepare your home for winter. You can read more about how to prevent ice dams from this blog!

Ice Dam Prevention Tips

Who To Call To Fix Ice Dams?

Rapid Restoration – DKI is one of the most respected disaster cleanup providers in Minnesota and wants to help you with any disaster that may have affected your home. We’re ready to help you fix any disaster that may occur, so give us a call!

Do you have more questions about ice dams?

Ice Dam Removal

Contact Us!

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