Gutter guard ice dams–people get really, really angry when the gutter guard they install suddenly creates icicles when they never had them before.
No gutter, whether protected by a gutter guard or not, is immune to icicles forming or conditions existing related to ice dams. It’s not uncommon to notice or really pay attention to ice dams or icicles until after you’ve gone through the expense of installing your MasterShield gutter guard system.
Without a gutter guard, icicles form off your shingles and drop down into your gutter, hidden from view. The first few inches of snow that you see on your roof is there, too, it’s just filled the trough of your gutters. No one sees this ice formation, or thinks about the consequences of it, safely from the ground.
Be Warned! Gutter Guard Ice Dams Will Happen if the Right Conditions Exist
As your roof thaws, water runs under the existing snow and, when the day is warm enough, drains into your gutter. As the weather cools into the evening, the water running down your roof and into your gutters freezes, potentially putting tremendous stress on your gutters from the weight of the ice. If it doesn’t rethaw the next day, you have an ice filled gutter and conditions that start to cause water to build up behind the previously frozen thaw– the start of an ice dam.
Gutter guard ice dams and icicles are the biggest issue if you are dealing with a section of gutter near an entrance way, a stoop or a above a garage door. If you are considering having a MasterShield Gutter Protection system installed, you may be able to help the system experience a faster melt rate if your dealer installs our High Flow filter in the panel above the egress.
MasterShield tends to release snow and ice better than most gutter guards because, unlike other gutter covers, it doesn’t create a new angle or flat surface where ice would have a tendency to form. It allows snow and ice to release towards the ground rather than back up the roof line.
We can experience icicles or a build up of ice on a section of the system where heat loss, poor insulation or poor ventilation are an issue. In situations like this, we recommend our High Flow Filter, which has a more open weave than a traditional MasterShield panel and, because of the more open area, snow melts more quickly and therefore the section tends to have less icicles form off of it as a result.
Want to take it a step further? You can heat MasterShield using standard heat cables. The heating element goes right underneath the filter where it can impact snow the most, which is also where it can completely eliminate gutter guard ice dams. Best thing is MasterShield can be heated retroactively, so if you don’t know if you’ll need to heat your gutter guard, you could actually wait a winter season and find out if you really need it or not.
If you live in a snow zone, you may also want to make sure that you have a snow rake available to you. Rake the snow off your roof when you are shoveling your walkways. By pulling snow off the roof above the places where you enter and exit your home you will also alleviate icicle formation.
Have any questions about gutter guard ice dams you’d like to ask us? Feel free to leave a comment below.