Although the ice dams may look pretty during the winter, you should also consider that they also represent danger to certain parts of the house. This is because they could make the water pour back in the house, peeling the paint down, sagging and staining ceilings, and so on.
How do they form?
In order to be able to prevent them, first you should know how these dams come to life. At the beginning the heat from the attic warms the roof but not the eaves. Because of the warmth the snow melts on the rooftop, but it freezes again at the eaves which are cold.
This is how the ice is formed at the eaves. There is more water coming from the melting snow, building up. The water could get under the shingles and go right back in your home.
How to Get Rid of them?
There are many options to get rid of them like:
1. Heated cables
One of the options you have in order to take care of the problem is to use heated cables. You should secure them to the edge of the roof in order to equalize the temperature inside and outside the roof. In case you would like to use this method, you should make sure to install the cables before the cold weather hits.
2. Fire with fire
Actually in this case you should fight cold with cold. All you have to do is to bring a box fan into the attic and place it where the water is leaking into your home. Because of the cold, the water will freeze, and so you can take care of the problem in a few minutes.
Remember that removing the dams with a chisel, hammer or shovel damages your rooftop. If you use salt, you do more harm than good because it damages the soil. So look for a safer solution.
This is an easy solution to make sure that you won’t have to face ice dams. Rake the snow off your rooftop while standing on the ground. Opt for a rake with wheels. This way you can instantly change the temperature of the roof without harming the shingles.
You could decrease the damages done by the ice dams using pantyhose. Just fill the pantyhose that you don’t need anymore with ice melter. Place it on the roof in the middle of the dam so that it touches the gutter. You could use a garden rake to place the pantyhose in the right position.