Why Roof Cable Fails

In regions with cold climate and harsh winters, many homeowners rely on heated roof cables to prevent buildup of ice on their roofs and in their gutters. Roof cables can be used on many different types of roofs and work by heating up to melt any ice that has formed, preventing the formation of ice dams, eave icing and icicles. However, roof cables alone may not be enough to eliminate ice-related roof damage, which can in turn lead to problems like leaks and water damage on the interior walls of your home, and in some cases cause even more damage than that which they are trying to prevent. Before you decide that heated roof cables are all you need, read on and see why your home may need more than roof cables to protect it from ice and water damage.

Roof cables don’t fix the source of the problem- When ice dams and icicles are able to form on your roof, this means that warm air is leaking into your attic, overheating the walls and ceiling. This in turn causes snow on the roof to melt from underneath and then re-freeze, causing ice. Rather than installing heated cables, it may be more prudent to schedule a home energy audit from a knowledgeable, trustworthy company, who can tell you where your home needs to be more properly insulated and point out any spaces where warm air is leaking into your attic so they can be sealed. The added insulation and improved ventilation can eliminate ice from forming on the roof in the first place, eliminating the need for roof cables.

Roof cables drain your energy– Even the top-of-the-line heated roof cables have the potential to increase your energy bill by 20%. Not only is this hard on your wallet, but it is also bad for the environment. Also, since some people forget to turn off their heat cables when the weather warms up, they are essentially throwing money away on energy that is being wasted during the summer months.

Roof cables melt snow…and then what?– Much like overly-warm temperatures in a house’s attic, anything that causes snow to melt on the roof can cause an ice dam to form. Think about it- by melting snow with heated roof cables, you are essentially just leaving water pooled on the roof until it freezes over again, which is exactly what causes ice dams in the first place. Though it’s supposed to work by causing the melted snow to drip off the roof, many times it refreezes either on the roof or along the edge of the overhangs.

Don’t let an ice dam cause damage to your roof- HotEdge can help! Our revolutionary ice melt systems work in conjunction with roof cables, allowing melted snow to drain properly and virtually eliminating the possibility of ice dam formation on your roof. Contact us today for more information.