Ice dams are formed when snow on the roof melts and then refreezes on the eaves. The ice accumulates along the gutters/eaves forming a dam. When this happens, the water flows under the shingles and into the house.
- Proper ridge ventilation
- Seal attic hatch
- Properly vent bath and stove exhaust fans to the outside
- Add insulation
- Seal recessed lights
- Seal and insulate ducts
- Air seal thermal bypasses around plumbing and framing penetrations
When the temperature drops, the risk of frozen pipes goes up. According to the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety, this is one of the most common causes of property damage during the cold winter months. Most often pipes that freeze are in unconditioned interior spaces in attics, basements and garages. Pipes that run on the exterior walls of the home are also vulnerable, as well as exterior faucets.
- Keep garage doors shut
- Open cabinet doors to allow warm air to circulate around the plumbing
- Let cold water drip from the faucet of exposed pipes
- Add insulation to attics, basements and crawlspaces
- Keep your thermostat above 55 degrees even if you plan to be away from your home
If your pipes do freeze you will need to open the faucet up and apply heat to the pipe with a heating pad, hair dryer or space heater. If your pipes are inaccessible you will need to call a plumber.