Warm air leaking into your attic from the heated living space below is likely the cause of a roof ice problem. For example, warm air can leak through cracks around a recessed light fixture or bathroom fan. When the warm air leaks into the attic, it continues to rise in a column, heating a spot on the roof. The snow in this area melts and the water runs down toward the eaves. The snow at the eaves becomes super-saturated slush and may create icicles. Colder temperatures at the edge of the roof freeze that water-saturated snow, turning it to ice.
Additional water running down the roof pools up behind ice on the eaves. The water may seep under shingles, into seams in metal roofs, and through the plywood. It gets into the attic and may eventually drip down into the home’s living space. If the ice on the roof gets heavy, it can tear off shingles and metal roofing. The solution is air sealing — stopping the warm air from leaking into the attic. The best defense against ice dams is a good offense. Before ice forms on your roof, contact EnergySmart to schedule an energy audit.
Prevent Ice Dams with Air Sealing
Controlling air leaks in your home is one of the best ways to improve energy efficiency. Stopping cold air from seeping into the basement and the first floor will make you and your family much more comfortable in the winter. Keeping warm air from escaping out the top of your house will significantly reduce your fuel bills. Air sealing will also greatly increase the effectiveness of your existing insulation.