Ice Dam Removal: Why Steam Is Best

Ice Dam Removal: Why Steam Is Best

Winter can be such a beautiful season with snow piling up along driveways and outlining homes and buildings in frosty white. Of course, it only looks pretty when you’re safe and comfy at home sipping hot chocolate and not out in it! 

You depend on your home, workplace, stores, and restaurants to keep you secure, warm, and out of the elements. But are you ensuring the best protection for your building when winter weather strikes hard? 

Ice dams are one of the worst threats to Minnesota homes and businesses, which is why the team at Clean ‘N Seal offers professional ice dam removal services that keep you, your family, and your guests safe. 

Here’s why ice dams pose problems for home and business owners and how we remove them in the safest and most effective way possible: with steam!

Why Ice Dams Are So Threatening

Ice dams form along the edge of your roof because of temperature changes in and around your roof. When parts of your attic and roof heat up due to your heating system, it melts the snow on your roof. 

But when that water reaches the edges, the temperature is colder, causing the water to refreeze as an ice dam. That ice dam then prevents more snowmelt from escaping and flowing off your roof. 

When water gets trapped, it starts to seep into places it shouldn’t, like into your roofing, attic, ceilings, and walls. 

The biggest problem with ice dams is how they collect water on your roof that then soaks into your home or business and causes extensive water damage. If left unchecked, this can ruin ceilings, walls, and floors and lead to mold and mildew growth. 

Any sort of water damage from ice dams is often more costly than removing the dams in the first place, so it’s better for you to get them removed as soon as they form. 

Alternative Removal Methods & Why They Are Problematic

While there are preventative measures you can take to keep ice dams from forming in the first place, you can’t try those ideas once winter starts. When ice dams start forming along your roofline, the best thing you can do is have them removed professionally. 

People or the internet may tell you that there are alternative methods to removing ice dams, but here are some common methods people try and why they don’t work.

Snow Rakes

Since ice dams can only form if there is snow on the roof, people may try to use snow rakes to pull snow down and off their roof. There are multiple problems with this solution, though. 

Even extendable rakes are often not long enough to clear snow from all areas of your roof while you’re standing on the ground, which forces you to either leave snow on your roof or get up on your roof and push the snow off yourself. 

Being on your roof is dangerous in good weather, let alone in hazardous, slick conditions. Ladder accidents, slipping off your roof, and damaging the roofing structure are all too common risks that are not worth taking. 

As a business owner with a flat-top roof, it might seem safer to be on your roof, and you might be tempted to push snow right off. But unless you’re willing to do this during non-business hours so you don’t potentially hit a customer with falling ice and snow, or you can do it so carefully that you don’t damage your roofing membrane, then it’s also not a risk worth taking.

Chipping Off the Ice

While it might seem logical to try to break off the icicles hanging from the ice dam and then attempt to chip away at the dam itself, this is often much more difficult and dangerous in practice. 

Frozen water maintains a very tight bond that adheres to surfaces. If you attempt to break off icicles, pull them down, or chip at the ice, you’re more likely going to damage or break your shingles, roofing material, gutters, or siding.

How Steam Provides Safe Removal

With this in mind, the safest course of action when removing ice dams is to melt them. But how do you do that without more water freezing and refreezing? Call a professional, like Clean ‘N Seal, who can use steam!

Steam is the safest way to remove ice dams because it melts them efficiently and creates pathways for water to flow off and away from your building. With professional low pressurized equipment and specialized nozzles, an expert can ensure that the steam power stays at the right operating temperature, 290℉, and maintains the precise pressure that does not harm your roof. 

Using low-pressure steam removes the ice buildup faster and reduces the amount of water runoff, so there’s less clean-up time, and you’re less likely to have water refreezing on your property. 

Low-pressure equipment also ensures that no matter your roofing material (asphalt shingles, TPO or EPDM, slate, or metal), it won’t be damaged during the removal process.

Clean ‘N Seal: Steam Powered Ice Dam Removal Experts

Ensure your home and business are completely protected from ice dams this winter with the professionals at Clean ‘N Seal. With over a decade of ice dam removal experience from the Twin Cities to Brainerd, our team’s mission is to keep your exteriors clean and safe year-round!

After the snow melts, call on us for your winter grime cleanup with our concrete cleaning and paver restoration services, as well as our beautifying house washing maintenance. 

Call 952.393.9588 in the Twin Cities or 218.232.3863 in Brainerd or message us online for a free consultation.