Winter Weather Causes Ice Dams

With another New England winter just around the corner, Hunter Insurance wants to make sure you, your family and your property are fully protected.

During the winter months, you may have noticed glistening icicles hanging from your gutter. What you may be unaware of is that those icicles can signal the start of significant property damage; the appearance of icicles is typically the first warning sign of possible ice dams.

Ice dams are essentially a wall of ice that forms along the roof of your home, usually near the gutters. Melting snow can back-up behind the ice dam, creating a pool of water that can leak into your home and cause damage to walls, ceilings, insulation and other areas.  With the extensive snowfall totals we had last year, coupled with freezing temperatures, homes in our area were hit particularly hard.

The best way to avoid ice dam formation is to make certain your attic is properly ventilated and insulated.  Even if the temperatures are freezing outside, poor insulation allows heat to escape through the roof, which in turn causes the snow to melt quicker.  When the accumulated snow on your roof starts melting down to the “colder” sections (such as the gutters) it begins to refreeze thus forming an ice dam.

While ice dams can lead to extensive water damage, it is important to exercise caution when removing them.   Only trained professionals with the proper equipment and roofing experience should be consulted.  Never step out onto a snow covered roof, as there is severe risk of personal injury.

At Hunter Insurance, we are committed to helping individuals and families protect what matters most.  If you would like additional information on ice dams and ice dam prevention, please contact Hunter Insurance at 769.9500.