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Resources: learning your home

What is Ice Damming?  

Ice damming is a common occurrence during the winter months. 

An ice dam forms at the edge of a roof and prevents snow melt from draining. As a result, water backs up behind the dam allowing for leakage inside the home. This can cause severe damage to a home if not corrected.

The primary cause of ice damming is heat loss within the home. Heat escapes the building interior and warms the roof causing melting. This melted snow and ice re-freezes causes an ice dam. Multiple factors can contribute to this problem and a licensed home inspector can help. One common cause is lack of insulation. This can allow the heat to escape the home and heat up the roof deck. We like this illustration by Steve Kuhl from The Ice Dam Company in explaining the anatomy of an ice dam.  

There are multiple ways to help prevent ice dams and a licensed home inspector can help diagnose the issue. Adequate insulation installation, areas of heat loss and even manually removing snow from the roof are possible methods. 

Ice damming can cause significant damage to your home if not dealt with immediately.  We recommend consulting with a qualified professional to help solve the issue should it arise.

We can help inspect your home for insulation voids or conduct a moisture intrusion investigation to find out the source of moisture in your house. 


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