All that snow that fell in the last week could be conspiring with Mother Nature to create problems on your roof!

Ice this time of year in Minnesota can be fun-- when you're skating on it, watching a hockey game, or checking out the Ice Castles in Excelsior. But icy roads sure aren't fun. And neither is an ice dam on the roof of your house.

According to this University of Minnesota Extension article, NOW is the perfect time for ice dams to form on your roof. And that's not good. So, just what is an ice dam?

"An ice dam is a ridge of ice that forms at the edge of a roof and prevents melting snow (water) from draining off the roof. The water that backs up behind the dam can leak into a home and cause damage to walls, ceilings, insulation, and other areas," the U of M says.

Ice dams form as all that snow we got in the last couple of weeks starts to melts off your roof. Everything's good until it hits the eaves-- the part of the roof that hangs over the edge of your house. The temperature there is usually much cooler than the other part of the roof, so the melting water refreezes and collects there, causing the classic ice dam.

There are many things you can to do try to prevent ice dams, but if you see one (or the telltale icicles) forming on your roof, the first thing you should do is get rid of all that snow. A roof rake-- essentially a specially-shaped shovel with a really long handle-- is the best method, the U of M says.

Then, there are a host of other things you can both inside and outside your house to try to prevent them from forming again in the future. You can get more info about ice dams, and what to do about them HERE.

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