As the cold weather continues to make its way into the Niagara Region it’s time to prepare your roofing for the season if it is not already. This week I am going to talk a bit about ice dams.
So first off you may be asking what is an ice dam? Well, in a nutshell it is ice that forms when melted snow refreezes at the edge of a home’s roof. The snowmelt runs down the roof and freezes into a dam of ice that prevents any more water from running off the roof.
As snow continues to melt, more water backs up and freezes when it runs into the dam, creating long icicles that hang down from the roof’s edge. Eventually, the melting snow backs up into the attic and the home can suffer water damage.
Why Does This Happen and What Can Result?
Ice dams can occur when there are freezing temperatures outside and warm air in an attic. The warm air in the attic heats the underside of the roof and causes the snow to melt. The cold conditions outside cause the water to freeze before it has a chance to make its way through the gutters.
If this process continues over a period of time, the water that is pushed back underneath the shingles eventually seeps through the roof deck and wets attic insulation. This can lead to mold growth and decay. If water leaks into the ceiling of the home’s living spaces, it can cause the plaster to stain and deteriorate.
The only way to prevent ice dams is to remove one of the two conditions that contribute to their formation in the first place. Since you can’t change the outdoor temperatures, you have to deal with the temperature of your attic. A cold attic means that snow won’t melt and ice dams will be avoided.
To keep your attic cool you can do two things:
1.Add Attic Vents: Every roof needs proper ventilation. This allows any warm air from your home to quickly meet cold air and exit the attic space. Have a qualified roofer examine your attic to see if your ventilation design is correct. If not, adding soffit or side vents is an effective solution.
2. Add Attic Insulation: You can also add insulation to the attic floor, especially around light fixtures and other vents. Make sure that the ways for warm air to leak into the attic are limited.
For all your roofing needs please call our team at Class Eh! Roofing. We would be glad to help you out!
Winter is coming and the cozier your home is the better your days will be when the snow starts to fly!
A great roof is your first barrier against the elements, but the insulation and ventilation in your attic is also very important in home comfort.
Insulation plays an important role in the reduction of heat transfer, the process by which air naturally moves from warm areas to cold areas. Insulation acts as a barrier to this process, preventing the escape of warm air through the roof during the cold winter months and similarly impeding warm/hot air from entering the home throughout the heat of the summer. Bottom Line? Homeowners are able to set their thermostats at lower temperatures all year long and reduce utility bills.
In addition to its favourable effect on energy efficiency, proper insulation, in combination with adequate Attic Ventilation, can provide several other benefits like:
Reduced potential for mold formation
Decreased condensation inside the home
Less expansion and contraction of roof deck
Prevention of ice dam formation in the winter
Protecting the integrity/longevity of the shingles
Many homeowners have likely heard the term R-value used in reference to insulation or insulating materials. This number measures resistance, or blocking capacity, to heat flow; therefore, materials with higher R-values have better insulating properties than those with lower ratings. The following dynamics will have an impact on R-values:
Thickness of the insulation
Where it is installed in the home
How well it is installed by roofing contractors
If you need help or advice with your home’s roof performance, please email us at Class Eh! Roofing or give us a call and we would be pleased to assist!
I want to focus on some helpful tips now that fall has arrived. The heat of the summer is gone, BUT I cannot stress enough the importance of a little maintenance this time of year when it comes to your roof!
It’s possible that you could have buckled shingles, dried out caulking, or leaking roof penetrations. The wind may have lifted and moved shingles or blown debris onto your roof. Seams on flat roofs may have failed or drains may have become clogged. With fall and winter approaching, they bring cold weather, higher winds, and blowing leaves and other debris, thereby exposing your roof to additional harm.
As your roof continues to be exposed to nature’s elements, your roof integrity can degrade resulting in damage that can go undetected until it becomes a serious problem. It is good to remember that your roof is protecting one of your most valuable assets-your home or commercial building.
We all have learned that preventive maintenance on our cars and trucks can save us money and make them last longer and the same is also true of our roofs which protect an asset which is far more costly than our vehicles.
I have said it before, but I will again. I recommend having a roof looked at every couple of years and even more if you have one that is exposed to a lot of leaves and debris that can clog drains or otherwise inhibit water removal.
Some of you are able to get up on your roof and do the kind of inspection that can save you a lot of money. Others may be more comfortable having a professional do it. For all you roofing needs, I look forward to hearing from you so please call:
Class Eh! Roofing at: 289-687-6924 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wayne Jeffreys is a native of Niagara-On-The-Lake and owner of Niagara based roofing company Class Eh Roofing!