Ice Forming on Exterior of Building Causing Ice Dams

How Ice Dams Cause Water Damage

Homes in Illinois see their fair share of long winters and harsh winter weather. Ice and snow formation and build up on our roofs can lead to property damage. At McMahon Services, we know how to spot ice dams on your roof and how to take care of the problem before they cause major water damage to your home.

In order to understand how to stop ice dams, we need to know what they are.

How Are Ice Dams Formed?

Ice dams can form from a few things.

  1. The heat from your attic can escape and cause your roof to heat up and melt the snow, which will eventually cause ice buildup on the roof and gutters.
  2. The sun will heat up the snow on your roof, and eventually colder temperatures will cause ice to form on the roof edges. The ice then prevents any melting snow and water from draining properly into the gutters as it should. This then leads to backups and can cause damage to walls, ceilings, insulation, and other areas in the home.

From Ice Dams to Mold Growth

The main problem caused by ice dams is mold growth. Water and moisture that leaks into your home due to ice build up creates water damage, which ultimately leads to mold. Mold thrives on moisture and feeds on organic materials like wood, drywall, carpet, etc. It also needs ideal temperatures between 5 to 38 degrees to thrive. As long as these three factors are present, mold will grow and continue to thrive.

How to Prevent Ice Dams

  1. Have proper ventilation in the attic.
  2. Check your gutters regularly. Keep them clean and free of leaves and debris.
  3. Insulate the ductwork in your attic appropriately to keep any humidity from forming.
  4. Be certain that the bathroom exhaust is vented through the roof and not any other part of the home.
  5. Air bypass, where warm air leaks through small cracks and openings should be sealed. Check attic access ports in closets and can lights in the ceiling as potential areas of concern.

If you notice that ice dams are forming on your roof, take whatever methods necessary to melt them before they become a larger problem then necessary.

If you do discover mold or water damage, the professionals at McMahon Services can assist with any restoration needs. Call us today for more information.




Posted in Black Mold Removal, McMahon Services & Construction, Mold Prevention Tips.