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Ice dams are ice formations that happen on the edge of your roof. They form when ice forms in an area where it shouldn’t, like at the edge of a roof or gutter system. This ice then blocks water from draining off of your roof and before you know it, you have a big ice dam that has formed on the edge of your roof.

When ice dams form, you might notice that ice starts building up on the edge of your roof, and then ice will start to flow down your gutters. If there is a sharp change in the angle at which the ice meets water coming from an upper-level gutter, it can prevent ice from flowing successfully into a lower gutter. This ice in the upper gutter can then begin to build up and eventually a full ice dam will form.

Once ice dams have formed, they are incredibly dangerous when it comes to the amount of damage that an ice dam can cause when it forms on your roof. They pose a significant risk for roofs with older shingles as ice dam ice can cause the shingles to separate from the roof. Ice dams also pose a significant risk for ice back-up, which is when the ice starts pooling in your gutters and backs up under your eaves.

As you might imagine, ice dams are incredibly dangerous to your house – not just because of how they look but also because ice dams can lead to extensive water damage if ice backs up under your eaves.

If you notice ice forming on the edge of your roof, this is a sign that ice dams are developing and it needs to be addressed immediately. If ice begins building up in your gutters, get them cleared out before ice backup causes water damage to your house.

If your home needs ice dam removal, contact Dean Bjorkstrand today. Additionally, if you have snow plowing and shoveling or roof snow removal needs, Dean Bjorkstrand has a solution to meet your needs.

A lot people think of rain when they think of leaky roofs, but leaks can happen in the winter as well. Tons of snow can build up on your roof over the winter season, and ice dams are the result. These hard blocks of ice put a strain on your roof and can lead to leaks as the water melts off. An ice dam removal service can help clear away the risk, but you must use a reputable service. Here are some mistakes that will signify that an ice dam removal service just is not up to snuff.

Use Of Inappropriate Equipment

The temptation for many is to use hard tools like hammers and chisels to get ice off a roof. However, those tools can end up damaging your roof even more, and make it more at risk of leaks. Your insurance company may not even cover you for any damage if there is a leak caused by such a tool.

Not Using Steam

To be gentle on your roof, steam is the best option for removing ice dams. It is hot enough to melt the ice and it will not leave too much water on your roof to freeze. Some services will use hot water, but it is not the best option. Water takes a much longer time to remove the ice. That means more time that you will be paying for. Using steam blasters, a service professional can cut the ice dams away from the roof.

Poor Technique

A professional will separate large pieces one at a time, carefully removing each chunk and sliding it off the roof. Poor technique would be spraying the entire roof all at once and trying to melt everything. This is inefficient and will again cost you money in labor costs since it will take so much longer. Another sign of bad technique is leaving footprints on your roof. The compacted snow from footprints will eventually turn into ice, meaning you will have to get it removed

If you find that you need to have ice dams removed from your roof, it is never a bad thing to have basic knowledge of the process. With these mistakes in mind, you will be able to ask the right questions to get the right service.

The experienced professionals at Dean Bjorkstrand, Inc. can help complete all kinds of landscaping projects to increase the value of your home. Reach out online or call 612-861-3919.

It is fun to watch icicles form on your house. In Minneapolis, icicles forming on your roof are one thing you can count on each winter. The bigger they get, the more impressive they become. Behind that large icicle hanging from the side of your roof, there is even more ice holding the structure in place. All icicles from your roof must have strong bonds to your roof or gutters. In previous posts, you can read about how these dams form and how to prevent them. This post is going to explain ice dam damage to your home as a result of leaving a dam unattended to. Ice dam damage is serious business in Minneapolis, further emphasizing the importance of ice dam removal in Minneapolis.

Ice Dam Damage

Water Damage

Water damage is the big issue that can come from ice dams. That is why it is so important that you have ice dams removed from your home. The water on the surface of your roof melts when the heat from your home rises. The water then gets trapped on the roof from the ice that is not exposed to the heat. This allows the water to sit on the roof and eventually leak through and cause water damage to your home. While this is an exterior source of water, there is also an interior source of water getting into your home that causes damage.

It occurs when air leaks into the attic. The air carries the moisture from the warm air in the home into the cold attic air. In the attic, the air condenses and makes the cold surfaces – such as the rafters and roof sheathing – wet. Over time, this moisture could turn into a serious mold and mildew problem.


The water leaking in from the roof from an ice dam is likely to leak into the wall and soak the insulation. These are areas that don’t have good air circulation for water to dry. These leaks can also seep into your living area causing water staining on the ceiling and walls. Having wet insulation and drywall for a period of time can cause serious health risks in your home, impacting the air quality due to the contamination of mold and mildew.

Potential Hazards

Not having ice dams removed can lead to serious repairs to the home if they are not dealt with. You eventually may need to replace all of the insulation in the attic and the ceilings and drywall. This process can have a hefty price tag and equals a whole lot of inconvenience.

Click here to learn about the ice dam removal services offered by Dean Bjorkstrand

It is no secret. Minneapolis is cold. If you are a resident here, you are no stranger to icicles. Icicles hanging from your roof may make your house look pretty, but they may also indicate the presence of ice dams. Ice dams are a damaging winter roofing problem caused by poor ventilation and a warm attic. Left untreated, ice dams can cause serious damage to your roof, gutters, paint, insulation, drywall, and can even lead to mold.

How To Prevent Ice Dams

What causes ice dams?

Ice dams form when melting snow runs off and refreezes at the edge of a roof. Warmth from the roof melts the snow that sits directly on top of it, causing water to flow between the roof and the outermost layers of snow. This water then re-freezes and turns to ice when it hits a cold unheated roof edge or gutter. As the snow touching the roof continues to melt, water continues to flow down the roof surface until it hits the ice, thereby creating a larger and larger ice dam.

Despite freezing temperatures outside, the underside of the roof in the attic is warm enough that it heats the outside roof to the point that snow melts. Ironically, the potential for ice dams gets worse after a big snowstorm. Snow is a great insulator so the surface of a roof can warm up more quickly from the warm attic space, thereby melting the snow faster.

Why are ice dams bad?

If this situation continues, the ice can work its way back up the roof edge, get under shingles, melt and leak into the exterior wall, home or attic. Damage from ice dams may not be readily apparent. As the ice melts and possibly drips into the wall or attic, insulation can be become wet and lose its ability to perform. In some cases if the right temperature and humidity exist, mold may begin to grow in the attic. Often paint will peel or blister weeks or months after the ice dam has melted as moisture from the leak in the wall or ceiling cavities tries to leave and pushes outward.

How to prevent damage from ice dams.

The most effective and sustainable way to prevent ice dams is to eliminate any sources of heat in the attic, and ventilate the attic as much as possible. To prevent ice dams from forming, the underside of the roof deck must be close to the temperature of the exterior side of the roof. Eliminate any factors that could be adding heat to your attic such as improper insulation, furnace or water heating equipment in the attic, or heating ducts or fans venting into the attic.

Act Now

If you find yourself battling an ice dam in the winter, act as quickly as possible to prevent any damage to your house. Do not attempt to hack away at an ice dam with a chisel or shovel. This can be dangerous for you and for your roof. One tool you can try is a roof rake. Roof rakes offer a safe way to remove large amounts of snow from a roof to prevent ice dams from forming or getting worse. If you already have an ice dam beginning to form, you can try using a calcium chloride product to melt the ice.

Finally, if you are in a really sticky situation, you can call a professional ice dam removal service. While this may be a more expensive option, taking the preventative step of removing the dam before it causes any damage to your house can save you money in the long run.

Click here to learn about the ice dam removal services offered by Dean Bjorkstrand

You may be wondering, “What is an ice dam?” if you’re not from Minnesota. While you do everything you can to take care of your family, you need to take care of your home as well. You should conduct regular inspections on your home throughout the year. Even minute repairs cause major damage overtime. An ice dam on the roof is one of the most common issues facing homeowners during the winter. Ice dams affect the attic. In addition, they can have hazardous effects on passersby and to the health of your home.