My shopping cart
Your cart is empty
Ice dams are winter’s way of adding insult to injury. For weeks, you’ve weathered gray skies and the cold. You’ve shoveled sidewalks and driveways to the point of exhaustion. Just when you think you’ve got the upper hand, you look at your roof and notice a huge, eerie edge of ice that looks pretty—but is unsafe not only for your roof but people walking underneath. Let’s look more closely at what ice dams are, why ice dams are dangerous and how to prevent ice dams.
The one-of-a-kind, hexagonal crystalline structures that form ice may be nature’s masterpiece, but when they team up, beauty takes a chilling turn.
How ice dams form
Ice dams occur when water builds up behind a blockage of ice. More specifically:
Left unchecked, interior seepage can cause significant damage to your home. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), water damage and freezing accounted for almost 22% of all homeowner insurance claims in the U.S. last year with an average claim of $4,757 USD.
With a few pre-season precautions, you can prevent ice dams from forming from the get-go.
In the fall:
Throughout the winter:
Damage from ice dams is covered under most standard homeowner insurance policies. However, it’s a good idea to meet with your agent to review your coverage before winter hits.
Even if you’ve taken preventative steps, ice dams can still form. When they do, you’ll want to act quickly before they cause further headaches and damage to your home.
Calcium chloride ice melt products can be purchased from your local hardware store. Avoid using rock salt or sodium chloride because it may damage your roof.
SAFETY FIRST – Accessing your roof in the winter can be dangerous, especially if you’re using a ladder. If you can’t reach your roof safely, hire a professional snow removal service. Here are a few more tips for clearing snow from your roof.
Ice seldom gets good press—think the Titanic and the North American Ice Storm of 1998. But ice dams don’t have to be a pain this winter. They’re both preventable and fixable with the easy and affordable ice dam solutions we’ve described above. So, look at the bright (and shiny) of ice: it chills our drinks and makes hockey, well, hockey!