In recent weeks, the temperatures in Moose Jaw have been well above zero, which has allowed for some of that snow to melt away but also has been the perfect conditions for ice-damming to occur on your roof.  

Ice damming is when an ice block of snow forms on the edge of your roof. The dam traps water behind it and stops the moisture from draining off the roof.  

“When it gets warmer out or if there is heat that accumulates in your attic because it’s improperly insulated, the snow melts down to your gutters and then turns into ice,” says insurance expert from Heritage Insurance, Greg Marcyniuk. “As that ice builds up, you get those ice dams and therefore you have the problems.” 

One of the biggest tell-tale signs that ice dams are forming in your home is if icicles are present on the edge of the roof. If you see these icicles form, there could be other underlying issues that go along with them.  

“Water stains on the ceiling, any dislodging of roof shingles, sagging of gutters due to heavy ice, damage to your Gyprock and peeling paint inside, deteriorating wall cavities, and the corrosion of metal fasteners,” adds Marcyniuk. 

The seeped-in water can also lead to the formation of mold, which as we all know can cause a host of respiratory illnesses and asthma.   

If homeowners are experiencing ice damming on their roofs, Marcyniuk says it could be caused by a couple of things.  

“Poor attic insulation, as well as exhaust fans from your bathrooms being vented into your attic.” 

For those looking for a quick solution to their ice damming problem, Marcyniuk recommends blowing cold air into the attic to freeze any water that could be up, removing snow from your roof with a roof rake, and eliminating warm air from entering into the space.  

For long-term ice damming prevention, Marcyniuk explains that keeping your eves troughs clear is one way to eliminate any future issues.  

“So that melted snow can keep from clogging and re-freezing. Along with making the ceiling air-tight so there’s no warm air that goes up into the attic. Ceiling air and leakage passage between the house and attic space. Also, consider increasing your roof insulation to cut down on heat loss. This not only helps for ice-damming but also reduces your heating bill as well.” 

Roofs are recommended to be cleared of any snow when you see: more than two feet of snow on the roof, cracks in your home’s walls, door friction or inside doors that no longer close, unusual cracking noises, ceiling deformation, or any roof ice buildup.   

With the upcoming weather continuing to be mild, Marcyniuk did want to advise homeowners if they haven’t already to think about adding on the proper coverage to your home insurance to make sure they’re covered if ice-damming occurs in the future.  

You can listen to the full “Ask the Expert” interview between Marcyniuk and 800 CHAB’s Rob Carnie below: