“Snow is in the forecast!”

There’s nothing that special about that statement especially this time of year in Northern New Jersey but there are some other near-future weather conditions that can turn this into a big problem for homeowners.

We’re expecting a possible 6+ inches of snow tomorrow, followed by cold nights, and then another round of precipitation during the week that will potentially melt the snow. This cycle of weather is the perfect recipe for ice damming to occur.

What’s an ice dam? “An ice dam is a build-up of ice at the eave that may eventually back-up water under the shingles. When snow on the roof melts, the water travels down the roof and freezes when it passes over the unheated eave. As the water continues to flow, it becomes blocked by the newly formed “ice dam”. This water then freezes and the cycle continues. As more water freezes, it begins to back-up under the shingle tabs. As this continues further up the roof, the warmer attic space may prevent the water from freezing and this water may enter the house.” [Source: GAF technical bulletin]

Does ice damming on my house mean I have a problem with my roof and/or gutters? No, not necessarily. It is often the result of snow melting and refreezing, but in some cases it can indicate improper ventilation in your roof.

Can ice damming cause damage to my roof? Yes, yes, and YES! Ice dams can cause moisture to creep back up under the shingles at the lower edge of the roof. The moisture can then begin to affect the roof deck and the sheathing. Untreated moisture can lead to mold and rot. Also, the sheer weight of the ice in your gutters can cause them to warp or even detach.

Our recommendation? Make sure to remove snow off the first 3 feet of your roof using an suitable snow rake. This removes the snow from the “danger area” around the eaves and will greatly reduce the chance of ice damming.

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to call George J Keller and Sons at 973-927-0963.

We have special crews that are available for snow removal from your roof. Please call us today at 973-927-0963 to reserve your spot before the next storm!