This winter Northern VA seems to be seeing larger fluctuations in temperature than average. Today was a gorgeous sunny day, nearing sixty degrees – and now we have a winter storm watch for tomorrow, with a predicted five inches of snow. The problem with getting these snows followed by warmer spells is that it leads to a lot of melting snow, which then freezes over night. This can cause roof damage when it leads to problems such as ice dams:

Common Winter Roofing Problems: Ice Dam Damage

In Delaware, like in many other places, ice dams can be a fairly common residential roofing problem. Ice dams can be an irritating and expensive source of leaking roofs and damaged homes, requiring the help of experts in roof leak repair. …

Since one of the main causes of ice dams is heat escaping from your roof, the best, long-term fix is to improve your attic ventilation. This is, of course, a pricey solution, and it does not solve the immediate problem of the ice dams currently on your roof.  Fortunately, there are some basic, temporary solutions:

Fast Fixes for Ice Dams

Icicles hanging along the eaves of your house may look beautiful, but they spell trouble. That’s because the same conditions that allow icicles to form—snow-covered roofs and freezing weather—also lead to ice dams: thick ridges of solid ice that build up along the eaves. …

Another temporary solution is to place ice melt socks at strategic locations around your roof. This is probably the cheapest preventative measure you can take, as you can make the socks on your own:

With the winter storm watch for tomorrow, tonight might be a good time to take a quick trip to Walmart for some ice melt and socks.  It certainly couldn’t hurt to try to protect your roof against ice dams.

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