New England winters typically mean Nor’Easters, Blizzards, and erratic temperature changes – one day there’s an arctic blast and the next day it feels like spring; whatever Mother Nature throws at us – we need to be proactive when it comes to protecting our roofs from the elements and the dreaded ice dam.
Ice Dams are caused by a temperature change from the main roof to the eaves. When the main roof temperature is above freezing it melts sitting snow which causes water to drip down the roof over the eaves. If temperatures dip below 32 degrees around the eaves, water freezes and builds an ice dam. Trapped water, searching for the path of least resistance, is unable to drip off the roof and will find its way between roof shingles and into your home. Be ready to fight ice dams before they start to form. Here are few tips to protect your home:
- Remove snow/invest in a roof rake. Keep as much snow off of your roof as possible – especially the eaves. This will allow any water to freely flow off the roof and prevent the formation of ice dams. Do it yourself homeowners can purchase an extendable roof rake to gently remove snow from the eaves and lower portion of the roof. If your roof is too high for you to safely remove excessive snow, call a qualified contractor to remove it for you. (We offer snow removal services after blizzard-like snowstorms)
- Proper ventilation. To maintain air circulation and prevent temperatures above freezing, ensure your roof ridge and soffits are properly vented. Professionally installed roofs, like our GAF Lifetime Roofing system, should have a ridge vent to allow cold air to circulate freely through the attic or crawl space.
- Adequate Insulation. Prevent heat from loss from your home’s interior by adequately insulating your attic or crawl space. Research local energy programs like Mass Save to see if there are any incentives or rebates. Call to take advantage of their FREE home energy audits or take their Online Home Energy Assessment.
- Leak Barriers & Ice Dam Protection. When hiring a roofing contractor, make sure they are installing all of the proper protective elements of a professional roofing system (learn more about the anatomy of a GAF Lifetime roofing system here). This rubber membrane prevents water from reaching the wood sheathing and leaking into the home. It should be installed along the rakes, eaves, and valleys of the roof. Our customers always get 6′ of water and ice protection with their GAF roofs – 3′ more than the average roof installation.
Is your roof ready for winter? Do you need an estimate to replace your roof? We are a GAF MasterElite Contractor and GAF Consumer Protection Award Winner! Contact us today for a FREE quote and protect your home from the harsh New England weather.