Do you have an issue with ice in winter? How about your home’s gutters? Are they doing well? Some people actually think icicles hanging from their eaves are a beautiful decoration for the season. It’s nice of them to see that silver lining, but icicles are actually a sign of other problems and can potentially cause serious harm to buildings. Water damage from ice dams is a major concern for the inside of your home and on the outside the weight of huge ice pulling on your gutters, roof and fascia can have a cumulative effect to cause damage by bending gutters and metal as well as breakage of fascia and soffit boards. In extreme cases rafter tails can even be cracked or sheared off. Falling ice can smash items when it falls but an even greater worry is the liability of ice falling onto someone.
When it comes to ice problems in gutters, our first suggestion is to deal with the cause of the icicles. First look at improvements that can be made to insulation levels and air sealing of the attic. If both of those are in good shape along with correct handling of ventilation then heat cable may be the solution you need.
We have found an excellent way to add heat cable to the LeafGuard system to help with ice buildup and minimize ice dams. In most instances a run of heat cable under the hood, in the trough and down the downspouts of the LeafGuard system handles the snow melt from heat loss through the roof. The typical zig zag pattern of heat cable on the roof eaves may also be used to help areas with high potential for ice damming.
The objective is not to melt all snow along the roof edge but rather to maintain a drip path for the melted snow to remain as water and drain away safely so it doesn’t enter the structure of the home.
If you have ice problems in the gutters in your home, business or place of worship please contact us for help to review your options. These visits are always free and our representatives will be able to help with a variety of possible solutions. Contact us at 814-898-8517 in Pennsylvania or 716-695-1010 in New York to schedule your visit or send us your info at our contact page.
For the traditional zig zag of heat tape with an open gutter, notice how the snow is melted along the path of the tape, not the entire shingle area. This is how it is intended to operate. This may be used with our typical LeafGuard heat cable application if necessary.