How to Prevent Icicles
LESLIE: Alright. Dave in New York is dealing with icicles and does not want them anymore on his roof. Tell us about them.
TOM: But they’re so pretty.
LESLIE: They are pretty but they’re bad.
DAVE: They’re pretty but they’re also dangerous. I’ve got one that hangs on the back (inaudible at 0:03:13) over here in the wintertime. Where I live, the houses, they’re not super-close together – there might be 40 feet between us – but the guy’s driveway runs right under there.
DAVE: And I had an icicle on there last winter that was about 10-foot long and I know it had to be 2-foot thick. And there’s another one up in the front of the house – there’s a little jut in there – and it gathers there. What is a good way to prevent them from happening?
TOM: Well, here’s the thing: icicles form when the heat from your house escapes through your ceiling, gets into the attic and then melts the snow immediately right above the heated space. So if you improve your insulation in your attic space and if you improve the ventilation, especially the soffit ventilation, you keep the roof surface at the same temperature as the outside all the time. Hence, you’re not going to get any meltdown that’s going to go and create an ice dam and form at the roof edge like that.
So it really comes down to improving insulation first and then attic ventilation second. And those two things together, Dave, can stop the icicles from forming. But I still think they’re pretty.
Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.