Ice dams

Author: Dave
Date: 02.27.11 - 6:22am

Unusually heavy snow in the northeast this year, fighting with ice damns again causing drips to come through my ceiling.

I have tried numerous things ot beat this. all kinds of insulation and venting, but once the dam is formed you either have to wait it out, or its time for removal.

I have had guys come to physically remove it. One guy was a scam, he chipped at it with a hatchet a little bit, shoveled a little bit, but i was dripping again within an hour after he left and was 100 dollars lighter. Another guy came, he beat the piss out of my room to shake it off, for 100 bucks my whole room was ice free but that was extremely tough on the physical structure. The whole house was shaking.

Looking online I also found the suggestion to fill panty hose with salt tie a string to it and throw it up over the edge to melt a channel in the ice. This does work, but not very fast and not if its too cold out.

The winning trick so far, has been to tie a weight to the end of a hose and throw it up on the room while leaning out the window. It doesnt even have ot be hot water, just running water is enough. Play around with it until it leaks out in the middle and not on a side and it will cut a channel right through the ice dam. I have also tie strapped the hose to a roof rake and hung it on the edge of the roof so I could position the water stream exactly.

Another trick i have been meaning to experiment with, is to combine the salt filled nylon with teh water hose. Just turn the hose on and off intermittantly to keep a fresh dose of salt water on the ice. that is probably the most efficient if you can be sure the hose will run through the salt.

I hate managing ice, but on an older home..sometimes its where you find yourself and it must be done. (note i have also heard people say that salt damages roofs so keep that in mind and do your research. when it comes to choosing between a good ceiling, or shingles that are to be replaced in a couple years..i choose my ceilings and walls every time)

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