As the snow continues to fall here in the Twin Cities - and rain on top of it - many homeowners are dealing either with existing ice dams or a lot of snow on their roofs that could develop into ice dams when the overnight temps dip below freezing, as is forecast for at least this week. And so we've been getting calls about ice dam removal.

Ice dam and icicles at edge of roof on home

Leaving the ice dams on your roof can cause many problems. Hiring any sort of snow and ice removal company is important, especially since you’re paying them to take care of a very specific, important problem. Lots of companies are offering ice dam removal right now because of our weather. Some are not as experienced as others, though. You can go a long way towards hiring the right company by knowing what to ask them before you hire them for the job.

How Much Do You Charge to Remove Ice Dams?

Ice dam companies usually charge by the hour, so the extent of the ice dam is going to determine how much you end up paying for the service. You will have to consider the height of the roof, the extent of the ice dam and other factors to go into the roof and the work that needs to be done. If you are given a flat rate, this may not be the best thing. If you have a fairly simple roof, you may end up overpaying.

Is Your Company Insured for Ice Dam Removal?

Instead of asking the company if they are insured, make sure to ask them if they are insured for ice dam removal. You don’t want to get stuck with problems they aren't covered for. Ask about both liability and worker's comp coverage. Ice dam removal can be a dangerous job, and you don't want to be responsible if someone gets injured on your roof and their employer isn't covered for the work. Or worse - you don't want them to damage your roof in the process, only to find out their insurance doesn't cover it.

How Soon Can You Do the Job?

You want someone that can come out the same day that you call them or the next day. Ice dams are serious threats to your home, and you need them taken care of sooner, not later. And the longer they sit there, the bigger they can get. You want someone that can do the job quickly and do it well.

What Kind of Removal Methods Do You Use? 

There are a number of different methods for ice dam removal, some better than others. You definitely don't want someone who is going to get up on your roof to hack and chop their way through that ice. You could end up with damage to your roof and gutters that way. Some companies use chemicals, others use high-temp steam methods. Steam over 250 degrees is the most effective. Also, make sure the rakes and shovels they use have plastic edges and not metal - those can also damage your roofing.

We provide quality ice dam prevention and removal services here in the Twin Cities aera because we believe you deserve the best. If you have ice dams, give us a call so we can handle it sooner, rather than later. Don’t catch yourself with further roof damage. And we can also suggest solutions to keep ice dams from developing in the future.