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Ice Dams: What Happens and How We Help You

This ice dam was caused from lack of both ceiling insulation and attic ventilation.
This ice dam was caused from lack of both ceiling insulation and attic ventilation.

 

APCO Offers Ice Dam Protection and Emergency Services throughout the Columbus, OH Area

When faced with icicles falling from your eaves, gutters weighed down by ice and snow, and a small glacier on the edge of your roof, you are facing a phenomenon known as ice dams. At APCO we offer thorough roof, gutter, and insulation services to address your home issues resulting from ice dams. Contact our professionals at APCO to avoid ice dams ruining your home this winter—we can help you!

Ohio winters can be brutal, and the last thing you need when dealing with half an inch of ice and still accumulating snow is to have ice buildup in your gutter then melt and leak into your home. While you probably already know that ice dams can cause severe damage to your home, we want to make sure that you know what conditions result in the forming of ice dams and how we can help you reduce—and sometimes eliminate—these situations.

What Occurs With an Ice Dam

When it snows there is a gradual accumulation of powder on your roof. That snow melts, both as a result of temperatures above freezing and as a result of heat from your home rising up through the roof. The snow run off filters down your roof to your gutters. If the weather is still below freezing, this melted snow is stuck above your gutter while the ice along the gutter creates a dam. The water can’t push through the ice, so it has to go somewhere. If your roof hasn’t been properly protected, that water goes into your home.

ice dam

Image Courtesy of easthartfordct.gov

Here are just a few ways that your home can be damaged by ice dam melting:

  • Insulation becomes soaked with water and then settles, which can cause loss of heat and results in mold
  • Ceilings and walls can be stained by water, which compromises their structural integrity
  • Exterior paint and siding structure deteriorates
  • Water leaks through your roof and dripping into your house
  • You pay more in energy costs because much of your heat is escaping through your roof, causing the ice dam process to begin it’s vicious cycle all over again
  • Ice dams can tear off your gutters if left untreated

Why You Need Our Help with Ice Damage/Repair

If you make an active decision to control the heat loss from your home and install ice guards, you can avoid the problem of ice dams. By increasing your attic’s ventilation and possibly installing soffits and roof ridge vents for optimized ventilation, the heat lost from conduction through your attic will be decreased. This means that there will be much less potential for snow to melt from the top of your roof, flow down to your gutters, and then get stuck in an ice dam.

Installing ice guards are another way you can protect your roof from the damage that ice dams can cause. Ice guards are small, upside-down L-shaped plastic or metal fixtures applied to your roof.

They are carefully spaced a measured distance apart to provide optimum snow support. The ice guard itself creates a funnel through which melting water can pour off the roof, using its structure to establish a path by which the water can leave the roof safely without creating an ice dam.

How We Handle Ice Dam Prevention and Emergencies

Our services related to ice dams fall into two categories: prevention and emergency. Preventative care for your roof, gutters, and home is our recommendation to survive the approaching chaos of Ohio winters, also endorsed by the University of Massachusetts at Amherst’s Building and Technology Department.

Ice dam prevention can be managed by adding insulation to your ceiling and optimizing your attic ventilation. We spend a few hours in your attic adding an additional 12 inches of insulation, ensuring that the heat your home generates doesn’t escape through the roof and, as a result, cause snow to melt this winter.

Increasing attic ventilation can be accomplished by using roof ridge vents, allowing damp, warm air to escape the attic. We install ice and water shields under roofing shingles on all of our new house installations, taking measures to ensure that ice dams do not happen on new roofs.

In emergency situations our team at APCO is adept at creating temporary channels through the ice dam which the water can flow through. We also provide a heat tape application service, which is a quick fix to limit the amount of heat escaping through your roof. For damage that results from ice dams we address it by installing new gutters, fascia, and soffit.

Regardless of your reason for needing our help, we offer a free evaluation of the factors that could be contributing to your home’s specific chances of ice dam development and then propose a variety of options to you. We choose to be transparent with our pricing, believing that the cost of our products should never be a guessing game for our customers. And with our above and beyond warranties, you’ll never worry about the value of choosing APCO.

We are the best choice you’ll make in Columbus for ice dam prevention, repair, and emergency services, so call us today to schedule your free consultation!

Additional information on ice dams:

www.ThisOldHouse.com/QuickIceDamCure
www.EnergyStar.gov/icedams

Columbus Ohio Windows | Columbus Ohio Doors | Columbus Ohio Gutters | Columbus Ohio Roofing | Columbus Ohio Siding | Columbus Ohio Sunrooms | Columbus Ohio Handyman Repair. APCO provides sales and installation for siding, windows, doors, gutters, roofing, decking and sunrooms, plus handyman service and repair, in the following central Ohio cities: Columbus, Buckeye Lake, Upper Arlington, Westerville, Plain City, Whitehall, Worthington, Circleville, Delaware, London, Granville, Grove City, Groveport, Hebron, Heath, Harrisburg, Hilliard, Logan, Millersport, Johnstown, Galena, Granville, German Village, New Albany, Newark,Pickerington, Lancaster, Marysville, Bexley, Blacklick, Brice, Canal Winchester, Dublin, Gahanna, Grandview Heights, Powell, Lewis Center, Lithopolis, Lockbourne, Pataskala, Shawnee Hills, Marble Cliff, Summit Station,Sunbury, Reynoldsburg and Sunbury.