Icicles may be pretty, but could be sign of ice damming

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — West Michigan has seen at least two significant snowfalls so far this winter and there’s a potential that residents could see six more weeks of it.

General contractors are reminding homeowners to keep your roof clear of snow and ice to avoid ice damming.

“It happens to everyone. It’s just a part of living in Michigan,” owner of JM Holmes Construction, James Holmes, said.

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The large icicles you see hanging from your home are actually not some frozen masterpiece. It’s a sign you may need to pay attention to what’s going on on top of your roof.

“The ice damming and icicles are a product of the refreeze of the melt and refreeze of the snow that’s landing on your roof,” Holmes said.

Holmes has already taken calls this winter season of homeowners needing repairs which can range from a damaged gutter or shingles.

The most common issue he deals with is when the ice damming causes water to back up and it enters the home.

“That often times presents itself in the way of stains and water spots on the ceilings of homes but can cause ceiling collapses and can cause electrical issues,” he said.

Many homes that lack adequate insulation in the attics or walls often times experience the most significant damage, that amounts to thousands of dollars worth of repairs.

Holmes says routine maintenance goes a long way to prevent exterior and interior damage.

“Snow raking the roof or taking the time to remove the large icicles from the roof, that could really save you a bit of a headache during our often times long winters,” he said.

Holmes also suggests that homeowners don’t get on the roof and knock away the ice dams using a hammer.
You could cause even more damage especially if you don’t know what you’re doing.

To learn more information about ice dams, visit the American Automobile Association’s website.

Grand Rapids, Local News, National, News


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