As a kid, you may have seen ice dams as part of a wintery landscape. Unfortunately, kid goggles don’t last forever and we are forced to see the world through adult lenses (like when you find out that smokestacks are not cloud makers). It turns out that ice dams can be extremely destructive and leave an expensive aftermath. However, adult life doesn’t have to be all that bad if you take the preventative approach. Do what you need to do NOW to make your future life MUCH easier.
An ice dam is formed when the warm air from your attic melts the snow on your roof, which slides down and refreezes at the edge (the overhang where the warm air cannot reach). As the warm attic air continues to melt snow, it becomes trapped on the roof as the ice dam prevents it from running off. This is especially common for roofs without a steep pitch. The trapped water can seep into your home and wreak havoc on your gutters and downspouts.
While you can attempt to sweep or rake off your roof after each snowfall or chip away at an existing ice dam, it’s much easier said than done. Despite the danger of injury and additional property damage, who has the time for that?
Now for the good news. Ice dams are completely preventable! Hire a professional to seal the warm air leaks, add insulation (which many older homes are lacking) and vent the space between the roof sheathing and insulation. Not only will you say good riddance to ice dams, but you’ll also make a dent in your home heating bill.
Now for the even BETTER news. If you contact your utility company, you could be eligible for rebates based on improving your home’s energy efficiency! Click here for information on Xcel Energy’s rebate program. Information regarding CenterPoint Energy’s rebate program can be found here.
Another fantastic resource for how to make your home more energy and cost efficient is the Center for Energy and Environment (CEE). CEE will even send a Home Energy Squad to your home to identify where efficiency improvements are possible. In addition, they can assign an Energy Advisor to connect you with qualified contractors and resources for FREE.
So you probably knew that permanent prevention of ice dams was the responsible thing to do, but now you are also aware that it might be the most cost effective approach. The best part is that Xcel Energy, CenterPoint Energy, and CEE teamed up to make it as painless as possible. Don’t delay, winter is on it’s way!
*The contents of this post are intended to convey general information only and not to provide legal advice or opinions.