Winter comes with ice dams – chunks of ice that form on the edge of a roof. What causes them?

Ice dams develop when heat rising from an attic (32 degrees or higher) melts the snow outside. Water then trickles down to the eaves and gutter where temperatures are colder. There, the water refreezes creating icicles and trapping ice underneath the shingles. Additional melting water can seep through the roof and exterior walls.


Ice dams represent 40-50% of new insurance claims related to winter storms and can affect any improperly insulated building.

While Ice dams can be removed manually, it is dangerous work, even for professionals. The snow has to be shoveled from the roof and the ice removed with either heat, chemicals or by chipping.

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