Those beautiful, clear and sparkly icicles hanging off your house sure look cool. They glimmer and shine as the sun hits them. But they could be a sign of a severe problem with the roof of your home. It's that time of year to talk about ice dams.

Icicles, especially larger ones, that are hanging from your home are definitely something to keep an eye on. If you have inadequate insulation in your attic or improper ventilation in your roof, the heated air escapes and melts the snow on your house. as the cold water hits the gutters on your home, it freezes causing ice dams to form. If there is no heat to remove the dam, the icicle continues to grow larger and larger. That can tear gutters off of houses. It can also seem under shingles and melt into your house causing water damage along the way.

So what can you do to prevent it from happening? Have a contractor tell you if you need more insulation in your attic for starters. You can also add heat tape inside your gutters and along the edge of your roof too. If possible, rake off some of the snow on your roof, but please do NOT go up on top of the roof when there are snow and ice. Be careful when removing large icicles too. Don't use a hammer or shovel to break them off as that could damage gutters and shingles too.

 

[via Cleveland.com]