During the winter months in the northern climates, not only are you faced with the several feet of snow but you might also find that your roof is leaking.

While there are a couple causes for winter weather roof leaks, the primary cause are ice dams.

Here's some information on why your home is experiencing winter weather roof leaks, the problems they can cause and what you can do about them.

Ice Dams

The primary cause of winter weather roof leaks are ice dams. If your roof is poorly insulated and lacks proper ventilation, warm temperatures in your attic can cause condensation  and the snow on your roof to melt and accumulate in your gutters causing ice dams. When ice dams start to melt during the sun of the day and refreeze at night, will cause the freezing water to back up and under the shingles causing leaks.

To stop the leak, use a long-handled roof rake to remove snow from your roof or blow cold air onto the area of the roof that is leaking in your attic using a box fan. This will freeze the leaking water in place, but you'll still need to deal with the ice dam or it will melt and start leaking again. However, an ice dam is best removed by professionals. Hammering or chiseling away at it can actually cause more damage to your roof than the existing leak does. Roofing contractors have special equipment to melt the ice dams safely without causing harm to the rest of your roof.

To prevent new ice dams from forming, make sure your roof is well insulated for your climate. Not only will this help avoid ice damming, it could also lower your heating and cooling bills year round.

Additional Sources of Winter Roof Leaks

If you don't find any ice dams and the "leak" is in a damp room of your home, such as an unventilated or poorly ventilated bathroom or kitchen, the problem may actually be condensation. Consider adding ventilation to those rooms by installing powered bathroom or kitchen range vents.

Once you've fixed the problems causing the leak, be sure to take care of any insulation, drywall or wood that has become damp. Removing wet insulation, repairing damp drywall and making sure wood dries out well is vital to prevent mold and mildew growth, which can cause serious health problems.

Now that you've had a chance to sort out your winter weather roof leaks, inspect the rest of your roof. Are you experiencing winter roof leaks? Contact us for same or next day emergency roof repair.