ROCHESTER, N.Y. — After a slight respite from winter, which even included a little bit of a thaw, the snow is back. That could mean trouble for people with a buildup of ice around the roof of their homes.
If thick ice and long icicles are what you see when you look up at the gutters on your home, it could mean trouble. The situation certainly means a lot of long days for local roofers.
There are many ways to remove ice damming; that buildup of ice near the gutters, which, if allowed to back up, could leak inside your home and cause all sorts of trouble.
Thursday’s winter storm doesn’t help.
"Ten inches of snow, plus cooler temperatures, is the worst case scenario right now," said Davis Herold, project manager for Roofing Rochester.
The local roofing company uses hot steam and water to remove chunks of ice from gutters and rooftops. Herold says the process is safer for roofs that traditional pickaxe or hammer methods, which, if done wrong, can damage a roof.
"It melts off the ice," he said. "Just gets it completely bare and it doesn't hurt the shingle one bit. So that's what we've been doing to address the ice dams without damaging someone’s roof."
Either way, the presence of a heavy ice buildup is a sign that there could be much bigger problems in your home with insulation and ventilation. Removing ice now is a big important bandage.
"That's an emergency situation," Herold said of mid-winter ice removal. "It'll solve your problem that day. But next year, the year after, the next 20 years, it could keep happening if you don't provide some solutions to your house."
Solutions which roofing experts say can be costly, but a worthy investment.
"Best case scenario if we get 12 inches of snow, is you want that snow to sit on your roof, until a warm day when it melts off," he said. "Not when it's 20 degrees."