Ice Dam Damage

February 13, 2011

heating, water problems, weather woes, winter

I was pretty happy and contented with winter until the temperatures tumbled into the double-digit SUB ZERO numbers, causing ice and ice dams. I found myself browsing the selection of gorgeous patio furniture at CNS Stores yesterday. *Sigh* They have over 200 stores– stores loaded with furniture and home decor and linens. I’m torn between getting a porch swing or a rocker, because I am going to be OUTSIDE all summer long this year!!

Back to reality. Lots of Northeasterners groaning about the ice dams these days, and no wonder. 4snow2011We got ICE. All the snow on our roofs promptly froze. Then, the temps bounced back up, and the ice melted. Then it refroze. Not to mention that my attic leaks tons of heat because it is a) improperly insulated (another thing I need to fix), and b) there’s no insulation in the second floor walls (we have to renovate that section of the house yet).

Here’s a photo of an ice dam, for those who don’t know. Ice works its way up and under the shingles, where it meets with the warm air from the house. Leaks commence, and can be extremely destructive.

Photo courtesy of

This house has evidence of some very serious ice dams from the past (scars of ugly, patched plaster are on some of the upstairs bedroom ceilings), but we’ve never had bad ice dams until this year. Maybe it’s because the house was never really WARM due to the disgusting forced air furnace system that was here. This year, with the new heating system, it’s downright toasty in the house. But I guess I’m paying a price…

We discovered some damage in our garage. Bad ice dams. This is the ceiling, from the inside:



Yes, that IS old tin ceiling. I think it’s about 120 years old, maybe. And above the tin ceiling is even older wallpaper– that probably dates back to the 1870s, I assume. The previous owners before us covered all these ceiling layers over with a 70’s drop ceiling. The drop ceiling has been collapsing, so that explains why we can see the old tin ceiling and old wallpaper and original plaster ceiling.

I’ll betcha there’s a human-sized icicle in the attic above the garage. 🙁 I’m too afraid to look.

There’s not a whole lot we can do. Our roof is too steeply pitched to climb up on it and loosen the ice. I considered throwing rock salt up on the roof…. we tried to get roof rakes, but all the home centers are sold out. Yeah no kidding.

So we want spring to come now. REAL bad. lol. I am SICK of ice!!!!

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4 Responses to “Ice Dam Damage”

  1. lin Says:

    Oh, damn. See? That is why they are called Ice Dams (damns). 🙂 That is nasty.

  2. Mrs. Mecomber Says:

    Ha ha, Lin, I don’t swear, but I tell ya, I’m feeling PRETTY frustrated with the, uh, ice dams! Yep, they are nasty indeed!!! I CAN’T WAIT TIL SUMMER!!!!

  3. Marg Says:

    Well that sure isn’t any fun. That looks horrible. Sure glad I don’t live up there. Hope you can get all that fixed before next winter.
    I have been working on Paint shop and learning some stuff. I am hoping to have time this week to play with it some more.
    Happy Valentine’s day.

  4. Rena Says:

    Wow. Did I just hear that? You can’t wait till Spring? LOL…just a few weeks back you loved winter!!

    I gotcha on my side now… Spring!!! Spring!!!

    My garage roof looks almost the same way. We have a FLAT roof on our garage and it leaks a lot. There is also a drop ceiling that is water damaged and is falling apart. We don’t have the money to fix it right now. Before the winter, I had my brother apply some waterproof mixture to the roof. So far its doing good.