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Tip #1: Prevent and Remove Ice Damming | Home Inspection Fairfield CT

Tip #1: Prevent and Remove Ice Damming | Home Inspection Fairfield CT

Here is Part 1 of our multi-part home inspection blog series: The first area to combat ice damming we will discuss is insulation in your home.  Insulation is rated according to an R-value.  R-value is the capacity of an insulating material to resist heat flow. So the higher the R-value, the greater the insulating power.   The idea is to keep all of the warm interior air in your home inside the conditioned space, where it belongs.  Each form of insulation will have a different R-value based on a per-inch measurement.   For this discussion we will specifically address the R-value in the ceiling space between the attic and conditioned area of the home.  Connecticut is located in Zone 5 according to the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC).  The minimum R-value for insulation at the ceiling in the attic space according to the 2015 IECC is R-49. (http://codes.iccsafe.org/app/book/content/2015-I-Codes/2015%20IECC%20HTML/Chapter%204%20[RE].html).  It is also important to note that many municipalities may vary in what they require, and the local Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) may indicate that R-38 is considered acceptable (cathedral ceilings can vary between R-30 and R-38 minimum).  While it is always best to check with your local building official, it certainly will not hurt, and would be recommended, to bring your insulation above and beyond what they may determine as acceptable.  Best practices should prevail over the minimum requirement.   Depending on your current insulation material and R-value based on the year your home was built, a contractor specializing in insulation can offer some solutions to raise your R-value, as well as discuss the variety of insulation materials that are available to you. ...
Tips to Prevent and Remove Ice Damming | Home Inspector Fairfield CT

Tips to Prevent and Remove Ice Damming | Home Inspector Fairfield CT

Temperatures and precipitation can fluctuate throughout Fairfield County, CT, and as Mark Twain once said…“If you don’t like the weather in New England now, just wait a few minutes.”  One thing is certain, we will get snow.  How much, who knows?  If you lived in Connecticut in the winters over the past 4 to 5 years, you probably experienced or know first hand someone who had ice damming occur at their house.   So, what is ice damming?  Simply put, the first ingredient is accumulation of snow on a roof. The second step is when situations occur at the interior of the home to contribute to warm attic temperatures that can cause the snow sitting on the roof above to melt.  This is typically going to also involve temperatures fluctuating at and above/below 32 degrees over a sustained period of time at both the interior and exterior.  Meanwhile, the snow that is sitting on the roof at the eave, will stay frozen.  The melting water will run down the roof and hit the snow barrier, causing water to refreeze and collect.  This water will then ultimately work it’s way back up the roof and penetrate into the home.  Icicles will form at the exterior, and water can damage interior walls, ceilings, insulation, and cause serious moisture damage.  It can create a massive mess and be equally as messy to repair.  Repairs should not be done until the area is dry and the issues of heat loss are addressed.   There are a few things you can do to help prevent ice damming which I will outline in the coming weeks. Please view my other...

Sinkholes on NOVA

So sinkholes are most common in karst terrain, or regions where the rock below the land surface is soluble.  They are scary.  Tune in and watch PBS NOVA for a great show.  http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/earth/sinkholes.html Search for: All Articles Categories Exterior Home Buying Home Maintenance Home Safety Insulation & Ventilation Plumbing Radon...