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Homeowners are frequently charmed by the clever steep slopes architects design to set a house apart from others. However, the look is not without its challenges — keeping it waterproof is the biggest.

No one wants a leaky roof, so it is important to know that some kinds of precipitation won’t simply run off the slope. When a roof has a pitch that’s greater than 4:12, you’ll risk damage from a phenomenon known as an ice dam during winter months.

Luckily, it’s still possible to have a stately, prominent-looking home that’s leak-free. To have a waterproof roof, you’ll need to learn about the importance of roofing underlayments and how they can help protect your home through all seasons for years to come.

What is an Ice Dam?

During the winter, snow and ice are known to cause problems for homeowners. The steep slope of a roof may just cause snow to slide and fall off; however, this is not always the case.

When the snow sitting on your roof starts to melt from the interior heat escaping upward and from the warmth of the sun, it can turn to ice. Or, freezing rain may skip the snow phase and cause a sheet of ice to form on the roof, particularly at the bottom of your roof and at the eaves. This ice build-up is called an ice dam, which blocks water from draining properly off your roof.

Larger problems arise when that layer of ice traps the melting snow or rainwater underneath. When the temperatures drop again, that ice dam will expand along the eaves as well as up the slope of the roof.

As you might imagine, the pressure from expansion can cause pathways in the roofing assembly that allows water in. The integrity of the roof is compromised, and additional damage may occur if the leak isn’t noticed immediately.

The Solution: Waterproof Roofing Underlayment

Experienced roofers know that the standard underlayment that is traditionally used on shingle roofs just doesn’t cut it when it comes to protecting their customers’ homes from ice dams and harsh weather throughout the year. This is also true when homeowners want a roofing material such as metal, which produces high heat and tends to expand and contract even more dramatically. To achieve a waterproof roof, specialized underlayment, often known as an Ice and Water Barrier, is used.

This high-quality option is applied directly to the roof decking or insulation panels before the final roof covering is installed. You can’t see it, but you’ll appreciate the insurance you’ll get not only in the winter months, but year-round.

This layer will protect the roof and home from leaks that are caused by ice dams and harsh weather. It also helps with roofs with lower slopes, such as 2:12 to 4:12.

Work with the Experts for a Waterproof Roof

This waterproof underlayment requires extra ventilation, as it restricts the airflow and can sometimes result in condensation that forms from a heated living space. It’s important to work with an experienced and knowledgeable roofing contractor who can provide you with the extra ventilation and steps required to avoid problems.

Spicer Bros. Construction, which provides exterior home renovation, bath, and roofing projects in the Delmarva area, uses this waterproof underlayment on every sloped roof to ensure their customers are protected against leaks. We’re a one-stop shop to meet your needs with friendly, professional service. Contact us online to schedule a consultation today.

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