16 February 2008

Ice Dams

This past Wednesday, during that storm that began as snow, moved into sleet, and ended as a major downpour of rain, we heard that awful sound that nobody wants to hear.

Drip, drip, drip.

There seemed to be a leak somewhere near our chimney, but most of the leaking was along the back of our house, due to an ice dam.

An ice dam is where the snow melts and then freezes again along the edge of a roof, causing a ridge of ice that prevents future melting snow from dripping off the roof. If you don’t stay on top of raking the roof, an ice dam can wreak havoc on a roof, not to mention the rest of the house.

Ice dams usually become apparent to us when we see big icicles hanging down from the roof. The worst ice dams are usually on the back of our house, which faces north and gets less sun. Here is what we’ve seen the past few days:



So today, being the sunny day it was, my hubby took that treacherous climb onto our snow-covered roof and hacked away at the ice dams. Here he is, hacking away... you can see how thick the ice is to his left:



And I couldn’t resist taking a video. This is early on, when he was just shoveling a space for himself to stand up there (he told me some of the drifts up there were three feet high). The worst part is the wind – you’ll see what I mean:





Tonight is another cold one in our neck of the woods. At least that means no more melting and dripping for a while. I GUESS that's a good thing, right? :P

Copyright © 2008 - Paulla Estes

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