People in Tyler, Longview and DFW often tune out information on ice dams because they think we so seldom have snow it must not be a threat. Actually, there are several ways ice dams can form and damage roofing in our area. Read on to find out when your roof is at risk.
What’s an Ice Dam?
When water freezes along the edge of your roof line, it can cause precipitation to back up into your attic and walls.
What Causes Ice Dams?
Ice dams form for the following reasons:
- Your attic is hot. You don’t have enough insulation or ventilation. That heat seeps through your roofing material and causes what’s freezing on your roof to melt away. Then it re-freezes in your gutters where it’s cooler.
- East Texas has crazy temperatures. You’ve seen the memes. In the morning you can wear flip flops and a tank top, then by afternoon there’s freezing rain. When that happens, your home’s surfaces are warm so water doesn’t freeze on them. The temperature hovers just below freezing and ice dams form in your gutters.
- Lows are frequently below freezing. Winter months it’s common to have temperatures in the 20s.
Basically, any time the temperature is 32 degrees or below, an ice dam can form. You keep the inside of your home nice and toasty and during the day the sun bakes your home’s exterior. When the temperature falls, your gutters cool faster than the surrounding surfaces. You may not even be able to see ice forming in your gutters. When it does, it prevents rain from flowing away from your home. Instead it gets pushed under your shingles.
Ice Dam Effects
Ice dams push water into your home. That’s a problem for a number of reasons. Moisture leads to mold and mildew growth, so you might experience respiratory problems or more severe allergies. Leaks stain walls, ceilings and furniture. If structural supports stay wet, they can start to rot over time.
How Do You Deal With and Prevent Ice Dams?
In colder climates, prevent ice dams by keeping the snow off your roof. In the Tyler, Longview and DFW area that generally isn’t a concern.
Prevent ice dams by keeping your gutters free of debris. Then, water runs off before it can freeze. It also helps to keep trees trimmed back. Shaded areas can be several degrees cooler, so any ice takes longer to thaw out once it forms.
Roof Leak Repair
If you have water coming into your home, it’s important to find the source. The good news is, we won’t charge you to take a look. Schedule a free roofing analysis online or give us a call at (866)454-7882 today.