How to Prevent Ice Dams from forming in Your Gutters

Dec 29, 2021

Ice dam in gutter and ice frozen on roof in winter, focus on icicles in foreground

Here in South Dakota, homeowners are all too familiar with the adverse effects winter can have on their homes. One prime example of this is ice dams, which form when there are fluctuations in temperature in various areas of the roof. For example, heat coming from the attic can cause the snow on a roof to melt, travel down to the edge, and refreeze, causing an ice dam to form. Here are a few ways to prevent ice dams from forming in your gutters:

Close Gaps in the Attic

As stated above, heat escaping the attic is one of the leading causes in the development of ice dams. This heat transfer is often the result of gaps and cracks in the drywall and around light fixtures and plumbing in the attic. Closing these gaps are as good a starting point as any in preventing ice dams.

Install Soffit Vents

Another key to achieving equal temperatures on your roof and thus keep ice dams from forming is to have soffit vents installed on the perimeter of your roof. These vents allow cold air to enter under the roof and eliminate the warmer spots that would otherwise cause snow to melt and slide down to the edge of the roof before refreezing.

Invest in Heat Tape

Another effective method of keeping ice dams from forming is to invest in heat tape. Heat cable works by keeping the gutters warm and causing snow to melt without having a chance to refreeze in the gutters. What’s more, heat tape can be installed with a control switch, making operation a cinch.

Get the Right Team for the Job

Although these are all effective methods in preventing ice dams from forming in your gutters, carrying out these preventative measures yourself can be challenging. If you live in in Sioux Falls or the surrounding areas, contact the gutter experts at LeafGuard of South Dakota today for assistance.