Ice Dam Risk Factors

30 December 2017

Our team answers homeowner questions every weekend on WCCO 830 AM from 9:00 am-10:00 am.  Have your most pressing home improvement questions answered by calling 651-989-9226 or texting 81807.  Here’s the must-know information our COO, Andy Lindus, shared on 12.30.17. 

With the subzero temperatures persisting, it’s unsafe to perform the vast majority of exterior home improvements unless it’s an emergency situation.  For many homeowners, the weather is highlighting areas of the house that may need examination, such as drafty windows.  This time of the year, subpar insulation and ventilation manifest themselves through ice dams.  Story and a half homes are the most likely to encounter ice dams.  That’s because the upper level of the home is comprised of walls that are straight for the first few feet and then quickly start angling to the top of the room before flattening out again.  Spray foam insulation, ventilation, and attic air sealing are almost always needed in order to create a more energy efficient space.  Rooms with vaulted ceilings are also a challenge to insulate.  The best way insulate this type of space is with a hot roof.  This process involves the application of spray foam insulation to the entire roof cavity.

Here’s How a Home Performance Test Can Help Pinpoint Where Your Home is Losing Energy:

Andy in Crystal had a great room addition completed on his home seven years ago.  He opted to not put a basement underneath and chose to go with a block foundation.  He wanted to understand if insulating underneath the floorboards would be a wise decision in order to keep the room warmer in the winter months.  Andy informed him that choosing to insulate the floor boards would provide a significantly warmer and more energy efficient space.  He then told the story of a Minneapolis daycare facility our team had insulated.  Prior to us commencing work, the home addition that the daycare was located in had flooring that was perpetually cold.  In order to remedy the situation, spray foam insulation was used throughout the addition.  Upon completion, the owner of the daycare noticed a night and day difference.  Because the learning curve for the application of spray foam insulation is so steep, it is recommended that you retain the services of a reputable contractor, rather than try and tackle the project on your own.

Interested in a Free, No-Obligation Insulation Estimate?  Click Here.  

Mary in Delano phoned in because she was noticing a lot of condensation on the double pane windows of her newly built home.  Andy’s response to her has that the humidity levels in her home were likely too high.  A humidistat allows a homeowner to verify the home’s level of humidity.  In scenarios where the exterior temperature is well below zero, home humidity levels should be less than 20%.  This issue must be dealt with promptly, particularly if the windows are wooden.  That’s because high moisture levels can cause mold and corrosion on the exterior finish of the windows.

Listen to the Entire Show Here:

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