SGI has released a warning about ice damming, which is a layer of ice build-up on a roof, which can prevent melted snow and ice from being able to drain off. 

The crown corporation has offered some tips on how to protect our home and prevent an ice dam from forming, but first, how exactly do ice dams form? 

Snow acts like a layer of insulation on the roof above your attic. When the snow melts above a warmed attic, water moves down to the cooler roof edge and soffit, and freezes explained SGI in a release. It says unless the water is allowed to drain properly, the resulting freezing can create ice dams. 

ice damming map

There are a few steps people can take to protect their homes from ice damming, says SGI, such as:

  • Keep the amount of snow on your roof to a minimum. Use a roof rake or hire a professional to clear the snow away – for safety reasons, don’t go up on the roof yourself.
  • Keep gutters and downspouts free of snow, ice buildup, and icicles so there’s a ready path for melting snow and ice to drain.
  • Ensure your attic is properly insulated and ventilated to prevent heat from inside your home from leaking into the attic and causing snow on the roof to melt. A roofing contractor can provide assistance if needed.
  • In the fall, clean leaves and debris from your home’s gutters and downspouts to allow melting snow to flow as intended.

Ice dams can damage shingles and soffit on your roof if left untreated, explained the crown corporation. 

“As the ice dam spreads up the roof, water eventually works its way under shingles and enters the attic. Once water enters the attic, it can damage the roof, ceilings, walls, and contents of your home. If your ceiling insulation becomes wet, it loses its insulation value and can lead to a rise in the temperature of the attic, accelerating the growth of the ice dam,” explains SGI in a release. 

@sgitiktok Mild temperatures allows us to spend more time outside. One activity you should try is roof raking. It’s great exercise and it can prevent ice damming, water seepage and expensive roof repairs. #icedamming #roofrake #roof #snow #melting #waterdamage #homeinsurance ♬ Ice Ice Baby (as heard in the movie Step Brothers) - Re-Recorded - Vanilla Ice