Ice Dam Information & Safety Tips

In most cases ice dams are inconvenient, but often not dangerous

If you suspect that you may have an ice dam, please be advised of the following information:

• Use a ladder and/or get up on the roof unless you have the proper equipment and training. 

• Stand on the ground and “chip away” at the ice. Not only could this cause damage to your roof, but you can be seriously injured by falling ice, debris, or tools.

• Use ice melt. It is usually ineffective for this amount of ice (greater than 4 inches) and the ingredients can sometimes cause damage


• Catch any water in the interior of your home into buckets

• Dry any wet areas with towels or a fan

• Call an electrician immediately if water is leaking or dripping from electrical outlets and/or lighting fixtures

• Contact a professional roofer or handyman. It is important to recognize that even professionals may not be able to rid your home of ice dams that are greater than 4 inches thick. 

• Avoid electrical lines

• Notify your home owner insurance company if the water is causing damage

• Consider waiting for the ice to melt 

• For more safety information from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, please click here and here

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