Prevent Icicles and Ice Dams on Your Roof

Have you ever stared at the icicles on your roof and admired their grandeur and beauty? Well you shouldn’t have! These icicles are actually what are known as ice dams, and can cause serious long term damage to your roof. Ice dams occur during the winter, usually during a heavy snowstorm. This snow can clog up ventilation in your attic, causing the snow in the warmer areas of your attic ventilation to begin melting. This melted snow then eases down the roof until it reaches a colder section, where it turns in icicles. Yet the problem with this is that not only does it damage your roofing shingles, it can also leak into your house, damaging your walls and ceiling.

There are several preventable measures you can take against ice dams. You can start out by keeping proper maintenance of your roof and shingles during the summer. Keeping the ventilation running smoothly can help prevent you for the winter. It is also highly advised by Chicago Vinyl Siding Company to clean out your gutters before the winter months, to help prevent of snow and debris build up. Sadly, even if all precautions are taken, a heavy snow-season can still manage to cause ice dams.

Ice dams are one of those jobs that should be not for do it-yourselfers, something along the lines of trying to tame a wild tiger. Roofs are extremely dangerous in the winter time, and one slip of the foot would end life as you know it, literally. It is advised to contact a professional when dealing with ice dams, but if you are so brave as to attempt to tame the tiger, there are things you can do.


The key to preventing and fixing ice dams is to remove all snow and ice from your roof. This should be done with a broom. If the brilliant idea comes up to remove it with a hose and water, return the ladder to the garage immediately. Water will make the roof extremely slippery, and injury will be almost unavoidable. The snow would have to be removed slowly and carefully. The ice in the gutter doesn’t need to be removed, and would in all honesty be too difficult to tackle. It is a far more intelligent idea to leave it be, and simply chip away a path in the ice dam to let water run through. Oh, and be very careful with icicles. When removing these, make sure there is nothing and no one underneath that these can harm, especially you.

Again, removing ice dams on your own is not suggested, and you should probably contact a professional if the problem arises. Those few extra hundred bucks will seem like nothing compared to an emergency room bill, or a funeral procession.

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