Roofing in Lancaster, PA Homes: Why Locals Should Worry about Ice Dams

Winter elements can wreak havoc on roofing systems, which is why homeowners are recommended to get their roofs ready before the season reaches its peak. Upset by the turn of events during 2013’s winter season, a concerned PA local writes to home expert Henri de Marne for advice on how to deal with ice dams:

Q. I live in western Pennsylvania and have a well-insulated house with R-39 in the attic, but I sometimes still get ice dams. Last winter when it stayed well below freezing, I had none, but they happen when we have thaw and freeze days because the sun heats the snow on the roof causing it to melt and refreeze when it reaches the overhang, which is still below freezing.

A. The ice dams you encounter from externally caused snow melting should not grow very big or cause serious problems because they are also likely to melt as temperatures moderate and the sun warms them up.

So far, snowfall in Lancaster County has been relatively manageable, experiencing no more than two inches in the last week of November. Still, locals can expect things to get worse, making it important to think of protective measures for roofing in Lancaster, PA homes.

Something that should be on every homeowner’s “Things to worry about” list is ice damming. Ice dams are those icicles that form on the roof’s edges, and the sight can make homeowners think happily about the film Frozen. While ice dams are not harmful per se, they can be a roof’s worst enemy when left alone.

When ice dams get out of hand, they weigh down on gutters and cause water to backup. These, in turn, will cause water to leak into the home. A tricky thing about roof leakage due to out-of-control ice dams is that it’s not immediately visible. To spot roof leakage, homeowners have to put their inspector’s hat on and keep a close eye on red flags like water stains on the ceiling and exterior walls and watch out for the smell of mold.

For optimum results, however, homeowners are recommended to enlist the services of trusted Lancaster roofing contractors to do a thorough roof inspection. These professionals may either recommend repair or replacement of any damaged components.

Old Man Winter may be giving Lancaster and the rest of Pennsylvania an easy time for now, but things can still change. For their roofs to survive winter elements like ice dams, homeowners are recommended to rely on experienced roofers like Eagle Building Solutions, LLC. With their help, their roofs can have absolute protection for the rest of the season.

(Source: Caulking top and sides of storm windows helps create seal,, November 30, 2014)

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