St Louis Roofing: Article About Temporary Ways To Prevent Ice Dams
When homeowners learn that they have an ice dam forming on their roof, they may not realize the seriousness of the problem. If the ice dam is allowed to remain, the homeowner may be left dealing with damaged shingles and a myriad of other St Louis Roofing problems when the snow finally melts. Although it is always best to have experienced St Louis roofers permanently fix the problem, working on the roof or in the attic during the winter can be dangerous. If a permanent solution is not immediately available, there are some temporary solutions that can help mitigate the damage caused by an ice dam.
One of the easiest solutions is to simply remove snow from the roof before it has a chance to melt and refreeze. This can be done by using a roof rake to pull the snow off the eaves. However, homeowners should note that this method can be dangerous as the snow could fall onto them and potentially bury them. Additionally, homeowners may need to use a ladder to access the roof. This simply may not be possible if the snow storm lasts for several days.
Before the next snowfall, heat tape or heat wire can be installed along the roof edges. When plugged in, the crisscrossing wires create channels for the snow melt.
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While this method can prevent water from accumulating behind the ice dam, the wires will not stop the dam itself from forming. Depending on the type of wires that are installed, they may need to remain plugged in if they are to work. If they are not maintained properly, this could cause a fire hazard or cost money to run.
Another option is to use calcium chloride to keep the snow melted. These chemicals can be put into a cloth sock. When the sock is laid across the ice dam, the ice will melt and provide a channel for the water to flow. While the calcium chloride works very similarly to the heat tape, this method does not require electricity and will not cause any damage to the shingles.
These temporary methods can help a homeowner prevent damages that could result in major repairs. However, it is in the homeowner's best interest to find a permanent solution, such as turning their roof into a cold roof, to solve their ice dam problem. An expert roofer should be contacted in the spring after the snow melts or in the fall prior to the first snow so that the problem can be taken care of permanently.