Stopping Ice Dams Before They Start

It’s fall in Minnesota, and Minneapolis/Saint Cloud homeowners can get a lot of mileage out of taking the next few weeks to prepare for the winter weather that is ahead. One of the most common concerns among area homeowners is the issue of ice dams, which can cause a great deal of roof damage. In many homes, ice dams are a yearly concern that never seems to go away.

Rather than dealing with them when they occur, taking the time to stop ice dams before they start is the best way to keep your home from suffering damage this winter.

How Do Ice Dams Form?

Ice dam issues begin when heat rises through the home via a process called the “stack effect,” which inevitably reaches the roof (via your attic) and begins to melt the snow that sits there. As the snow melts, water begins to trickle to the edge of the roof, where it quickly freezes due to the lack of residual heat. The result? A block of ice at the edge of your roof that traps water, allowing it to pool and build up along your roof, causing irreversible damage in a relatively short period of time.

Why are ice dams worth paying attention to? Quite simply, they can cause structural damage to your home, added wear and tear on your heating system and moisture problems, which can result in dangerous mold and indoor air quality (IAQ) issues. Clearly, this is a problem that should not go overlooked.

The RetroGreen Solution

At RetroGreen, we see ice dams on a regular basis and know just how problematic they can be. There are plenty of contractors who will perform simple “band aid” fixes on ice dams once they form, but the problem inevitably comes back around. Instead, it’s important that homeowners focus on beefing up insulation and ensuring that their homes are properly air sealed. This will also allow your heating system to operate better, since the heat that caused the ice dams to begin with won’t be escaping your home as readily.

Insulation and air sealing play major roles in the overall structural integrity of the home. The trained home performance specialists at RetroGreen have the knowledge and experience it takes to ensure that ice dams never again become a problem in your home, no matter how bad the issue might currently be.

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