do gutter guard cause ice dams

Do Gutter Guard Cause Ice Dams? Ice Dam Dilemma

Ice dams are one of the worst things you could experience in the winter. Ice damming prevents the melting snow from draining through your gutters because of the snow ridge built at the end of the roof. Since the reason for the ice damming is uncertain, most assume the cause for the ice dams to build in your roof edge is the gutter guards. As a result, it has led most people experiencing ice damming in winter to ask do gutter guards cause ice dams.

However, gutter guards are not the primary reason for ice damming, and it is mostly rooted in a myth people have practiced to believe. But, in this article, we will discuss the answers to do gutter guards cause ice dams. Hence, you will be able to figure out the reason for the ice damming at the end of the article and help you prevent them from forming on your roof.

Do Gutter Guards Cause Ice Dams?

Though it is traditional to believe that gutter guards are the reason for the ice damming, it is only a myth assumed. Since gutter guards are used to collect windswept debris on your roof,  the general idea is that the snow freezes in the gutter. But gutter guards are designed to collect debris and let water flow through gutters. Improper installation of gutter guards and poor maintenance has also led to assume do gutter guards cause ice dams, but they are not the primary reason for the ice damming in your home.

How Do Gutter Guards Cause Ice Dams?

Though gutter guards are not the primary reason to form ice dams in your home, they can also contribute to the cause. However, it is rare for gutter guards to be the reason for ice dams. Gutter guards can be the victim of ice damming only if clogged or improperly installed. Since gutter guards are installed to trap debris in your roof, failing to maintain and clean them will clog them and prevent the melting snow from flowing freely.

It is also vital to check if the gutter guards are installed properly or if they divert the flowing direction by stopping the snow from draining through the gutter and contributing to forming ice damming in freezing temperatures.

What Causes Ice Dams In Your Roof?

Figuring out the reason for what causes ice dams to form on your roof can help to prevent them in the future. Hence, below are some possible reasons for what causes ice dams on your roof.

  • Poor insulation system in your home

The primary reason for the ice dams to form in your home is because of the poor insulation system in your home. If there are leakages in the attic where the heaters are installed, it releases hot air melting down the snow to the roof; however, when the snow reaches the end of the roof, it freezes in the gutters.

Since the heater is constantly used during the winter, it also results in heating the roof and melting the snow. The melting snow then rolls down the slope of your roof and freezes when exposed to cold air.

  • Not removing snow from the roof

It is normal to experience heavy snowfall during the winter, which collects in larger amounts on the roofs. Failing to rake down the excess snow from the roofs will limit the percentage of melting snow to flow down when the temperature drops. Thus, removing the snow accumulated on your roofs is vital to allow the snow to melt down the roofs and prevent ice dams.

  • Clogged gutters

Though clogged gutters are not a common reason for ice dams, they also contribute to the cause. If the gutter is not properly maintained and clean, the debris, leaves, and twigs will block the snow from flowing freely when the temperature drops. Hence, a clogged gutter guard restricts the melting from draining by forming ice dams.

  • Improper gutter guard installation

If the gutter guards are broken or not properly installed, it disrupts the melting snow from draining properly. Though the gutter will still drain, it might not be effective and will result in forming ice dams in your roofs.

What Causes Ice Dams In Your Roof?

What Are The Consequences Of Ice Damming On The Roof?

Ice dams are one of the last things you would want to experience in the winter because of the consequences. Since getting rid of ice damming from roofs is challenging, it is always better to expect the consequences before it worsens the situation. Thus, below we have listed the possible consequences of ice damming.

  • Damages to the roof

When the ice dams are formed at the edge of your roof, the extra weight hanging from the edges will result in damage removal and sometimes breaking down the fascia or the gutters from the roof.

  • Leakages in the sealing

Cracks in the roof result from ice damming since extra pressure is added to the roof, creating leakages.

  • Risk to injuries

Removing ice damming during the winter is challenging with the freezing temperature. The chances for the ice damming to fall and cause personal injuries are high during the removal.

How To Prevent Ice Damming On The Roof?

Prevention is better than cure is the best advice to remember when it reminds you of the consequences of ice damming. Hence, below are a few tips that will be useful to prevent ice damming on the roof.

  1. Check for leakages in the attic roof and secure the ventilation system in your home. It also helps to save electricity bills in your home.
  2. Rake the excess snow off the roof often.
  3. Clean the gutter guards by removing leaves, debris, and twigs to unclog them and let melting snow flow through them.
  4. Check if the gutters are properly installed and allow the snow to drain freely.

How To Remove Ice Dams From The Roof?

Once you have determined the reason for ice damming on your roof, it is time to get rid of them before it worsens the situation and damages the roof. It is generally advised to consult professional help to remove ice dams since they are safer but can also be equally expensive. Thus, using hot water is a DIY-friendly method to remove the ice dams by pouring them along the ice dams to melt.

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