In Minnesota, accumulation of snow and ice is a given during the winter months. Roofs must be ready to handle excessive snow and ice over several months they can protect the structures underneath. The biggest winter threat to roofing is not the several feet of snow it will endure over the winter, it is the threat of ice dams that can trap water and ice on the edges of the roof. Here are some tips on how to watch for ice dams and possible damage to your roof. 

Ice Dam Early Warning Signs

Ice dams occur due to snow melting and refreezing on the roof. This is most common when there is poor insulation under the roof, allowing “hot spots” to let warm air escape from inside the house. Common hot spots are around vents or skylights. You can recognize hot spots by checking your roof shortly after new snow. Are there areas that melt quickly? If so, that water can trickle down the roof and refreeze at the edge or gutters, causing ice dams. Other warning signs of ice dams include:

  • Large icicles forming 
  • Noticeable ice formations in or above gutters
  • Snow and ice only on the lower portion of the roof 
  • Gutters do not drain 
  • Ice forming on exterior walls 
  • Leaks inside the home

When ice dams form and water accumulates on the roof, leaks are common. Watch for water stains on ceilings or walls – most leaks from ice dams occur within a few feet of the exterior wall where the water pools. If there is a leak, you need a roof repair quickly to prevent further damage to your roof and home. 

Emergency Roof Repairs 

Our experienced roof repair experts are ready to come to the rescue if you have ice dam roof damage. We, at Northway Commercial, are available 24 hours a day, if you notice your roof is leaking and you need an emergency repair. Contact us if you suspect ice dam damage to your roof and need an inspection or repair.