Indianapolis gets its fair share of wintry weather. While the falling snow can be quite beautiful and the perfect backdrop to the holiday season, winter also poses risks to your home. One such risk is in the form of ice dams. In this post, our crew at TAG Exteriors will unpack what an ice dam is, why you need to think about them, and what you can do to prevent ice dams from occurring.

Ice DamWhat is an ice dam?

During the winter months, the weather doesn’t typically stay at one constant temperature. This freezing and refreezing process can cause ice build-up to occur in your gutters and along your roof line.

The Family Handyman does a great job explaining how an ice dam forms: “Ice dams occur after heavy snowfall when warm air in the attic causes the roof to warm and the snow to melt. Water running down the roof refreezes when it reaches the colder roof edge, forming a mound of ice.” (For additional know-how, check out our previous blog “What Are Ice Dams?”)

Why prevent ice dams?

In many Indianapolis homes, ice dams go unnoticed—that is, until damages occur. When an ice dam melts, the water often seeps back up into the roof and under shingles. Sometimes, that water can get under the shingles anywhere from 5 to 10 feet back from the roof line. Over time, this water damages the roof as well as the underlying insulation, drywall, and so on. Damages can be quite costly and difficult to repair, so prevention is your best bet.

How can I keep ice dams at bay?

Our pro team of roofers and general contractors offer the following advice for preventing an ice dam this winter:

  1. Make sure your roof is well-insulated and well-vented. A poorly functioning roof just increases the likelihood that ice dams will form.
  2. Keep your gutters free of debris and in good condition. This step is best done before winter hits or when the weather isn’t snowy or icy. Debris just clogs gutters and adds to the issue of ice building up. For gutter repair, give us a call.
  3. Get a roof inspection from a professional. If you want to make sure you’ve done all you can to avoid ice dams, then schedule a roof inspection. Our roofers can tell you whether repairs are necessary to avoid ice dams or other damages.

What if my home already has ice dam damage?

If ice dams have already struck your Indiana home, then don’t despair. Contact TAG Exteriors at (317) 757-5005 to schedule an appointment with our experienced roofers. We’ll come to your home to assess the issue, give you an estimate on repairs, and help you get free and clear of future ice dams.


photo credit: State Farm via flickr license