We moved into our current house in 2007, and got our first ice dam that winter thanks to a through-the-wall air conditioning unit. We removed the unit, patched the wall, and didn’t have any more problems. Until this winter, when Massachusetts was pounded with snow. What you see on our roof is actually solid ice – the snow has already been raked/shoveled off. Some of the ice melts, and then we get nice little drips (and even light streams!) in our dining room and playroom – hopefully nowhere else anytime soon! Mike got to spend six hours Saturday and a couple more hours Sunday afternoon chiseling a drainage channel in the ice, and the drips in both places have stopped. So long as we don’t join the ranks of Massachusetts homes with collapsed roofs, we’ll be happy.
Mike and I learned that gutters make ice dams worse (Since water can freeze in them, adding to the weight), so I think our gutters will come off the roof before next winter! Better insulation in the attic would probably help, too, although I think this year’s exceptionally extreme winter (with no thaw days) is the main culprit. I think my kids were a little young for the central science lesson – that heat rising through the roof causes the ice closest to the roof to melt. Then the water gets stuck between the roof and the ice, and eventually goes through the roof out of necessity – unless a certain darling husband chisels out an alternate escape route. Thanks, honey!
Stuck indoors? Maybe your kids would like to make a play-doh play mat. Or maybe they’d prefer free-style art on large sheets of paper? Or playing with felt dress-up sets or geometric shapes on a felt board? If all else fails, I have yet to meet a kid who doesn’t think that decorating a cake with pudding is pretty cool!