Keep an eye on the snow on your roof
This home is an example of a well-insulated attic. Soffit vents are ensuring proper airflow, and heat stays below the insulation with minimal escape. There is no ice damming occurring because there is no heat release at the wall area. Ice dams occur when a freeze/thaw cycle is present, which leads to thick ice buildup at the eaves and icicles..
Having a home with proper insulation levels not only keeps your family warm in the cold months, but it keeps money in your wallet by keeping heating costs low. Cellulose insulation has been shown to decrease energy bills by up to 60% over a two-year period. Home with severe insulation issues can benefit most from this improvement.
A home that is poorly insulated can lead to some serious heat loss, as evidence by this photo.
Ice dams are evidence of poor insulation. Heat is escaping through roof, and this causes snow to melt and make its way to the eaves. Water gathers, freezes and repeats. Once at the fascia, the heat loss in this area of the roof causes icicles due to the constant freezing and thawing of water.
An excessive buildup of ice can lead to water damage when warmer weather becomes consistent. By that time, the homeowner has surely felt the sting of their heating bills as well, as they’re essentially paying to heat the exterior of their home as well.
Only sufficient levels of insulation and proper venting can reduce these problems. A simple insulation consultation is the first step in solving your issues and allowing you to start saving money.
Causes of Insulation Damage
Wildlife are a common culprit when it comes to damaged insulation. Animals such as squirrels, raccoons, bats, and mice can turn your attic upside down and render your insulation essentially useless over time. Many homeowners have never even seen their attic, so having a look at the roof this time of year can give them a glimpse into what may (or may not) be happening up there.
The condition of your roof has a direct impact on the effectiveness of your insulation. If your roof is allowing heat to escape through unsealed holes or faulty construction, it can cause condensation to build up. This can lead to mould and water damage in your attic.
The main cause of attic moisture is moist air being transported from the warm, heated area of a home into the unheated attic via airflow. This typically occurs during the winter. Moisture contained in the escaping air of the home is responsible for the condensation problems, while the heat contained in that same escaping air is the reason for the ice damming. Escaping warm air raises the temperature of the attic, which will cause any snow on the roof to melt and run down to the roof edge where it will freeze and turn to ice.
If you suspect your attic may be in need of some TLC, book a consultation today.