Somerset County Roofers: Article About Dangers Of Ice Dams
Cold and snow are common conditions in many parts of the country, but when homeowners want to protect their roof from these harsh conditions, it is important for them to understand the danger that ice dams can pose. Slippery sidewalks and icy roads are not unusual, but when a roof develops ice, it won't be long before the roof deck is damaged. Once the roof deck gets wet, moisture can start to leak into the attic and down interior walls, which eventually will lead to widespread damage.
The best way to protect a home from the damage that ice dams can leave behind is to make sure the roof is ready for winter. Somerset County roofers recommend maintaining a cool roof throughout the winter. Many homeowners don't realize how much heat they lose into their attic. Whether it is not having insulation with the right R Value to keep the heat in the home from rising into the attic or if it is due to ductwork with holes, gaps in light fixtures or any number of other problems, when the attic gets warm, so will the underside of the roof.
When the underside of a roof gets warm, it can lead to premature melting of any snow standing on the roof. This might not seem like a bad thing, but in actuality, it sets up a situation that can lead to roof leaks and water damage.
The roofers from Peter W Smith Construction in Somerset County NJ would be happy to answer any question you have about residential roofing or roof repair.
A warm attic doesn't melt snow evenly, it tends to melt it only at the highest peaks of the roof. As the snow melts, the water needs to drain, so it works its way towards the eaves. Unfortunately, because the eaves are still cold, and the snow hasn't started to melt yet, the draining water backs up and eventually freezes along the eaves and gutters as well as in roof valleys.
Once ice dams form, the water dripping from higher sections of the roof will begin to seep under roofing materials, eventually soaking the roof deck. When the roof deck gets wet, water damage can spread quickly.
Preventing ice dams comes down to making sure the underside of the roof stays cool. This way, there is no danger of snow melting unevenly across the roof. The best ways to ensure a cool roof is to make sure there is good attic ventilation. Additionally, attic insulation should be sufficient to prevent heat from penetrating the attic. Gaps in fixtures and vents should be sealed, and leaking ductwork should be repaired. This will help keep the attic cool, but it will also prevented wasted heating dollars.