Winter is pretty but it can wreak havoc on your home. When you see icicles hanging from the edge of your roof, it’s not just a decorative winter feature. It’s actually a sign that your home needs some maintenance. Fortunately, a little bit of effort and attention to gutter cleaning can pay off.
What are Ice Dams?
Icicles on your roof are a sign that there are ice dams in your gutters. This isn’t just a hassle, though: it’s a sign of problems that need to be cleared. Ice dams are usually a sign of problems with your roof, attic ventilation, and your gutters. Ice dams happen when the snow melts higher on the roof and runs down to the colder eaves, where it re-freezes.
The combination of poor attic ventilation or roof maintenance, along with warm space in your attic, creates the right conditions for ice to build up in your gutters. Poorly maintained gutters can also make ice dams more likely to occur and to cause damage.
Why You Need to Protect Your Home
Ice dams can be very heavy. As a result, your gutters can break and even present a risk to people walking below. But there’s also more to ice dams than just what is visible. Ice dams build up when your attic is warmer than the underside of the roof. They are also more likely to occur after heavy snow.
The real problem with ice dams is that they can lead to leaks inside your home. The first point of contact is your insulation, which can get soaked and become less effective. You can also end up with substantial amounts of water in your home, which can soak through your ceiling and damage your drywall. Wet drywall can lead to mold and require expensive, difficult repairs.
How to Prevent Ice Dams
Prevention is much easier and more affordable than repair when it comes to ice dams. Long-term prevention includes improving your attic ventilation, adding more insulation to the floor of your attic, and reducing sources of heat in your attic, such as recessed lighting.
But the good news is that you can prevent many of these problems with regular gutter maintenance. Call a contractor today to get your gutters cleaned. You should have this cleaning done at least a couple times a year. Roof cleaning services can also help keep your roof clear of debris and snow. Gutter cleaning and roof maintenance is a good investment that can save you a lot in the long run.