One problem that homeowners often run into during freezing temperatures is the formation of ice dams. But how much does it cost to remove these unwanted icy formations from your roof? That’s exactly what I’m going to cover today in this blog post. This article aims to not only explore the varying costs associated with ice dam removal, but also discuss the multiple factors that influence these expenses, the methods of ice dam removal available, and whether choosing the DIY route or hiring a professional would be the best option.
Please keep in mind that the costs associated with ice dam removal are subject to change and are based on various factors. The costs written in this article may not reflect the actual cost provided by your roofing contractor.
The Average Cost Of Ice Dam Removal
The first step to understanding the cost of ice dam removal is understanding the average range within which ice dam removal typically falls. Based on the current market, homeowners can expect to spend anywhere between $200 and $600 per hour on professional ice dam removal services in 2024.
Factors Affecting The Ice Dam Removal Cost
When it comes to estimating the cost of ice dam removal, several variables come into play. These factors can significantly impact your total expenses and thus, should be thoughtfully considered. Let’s start by examining these different influences in detail.
1. Size of Your Home and Roof
Undoubtedly, one of the primary considerations regarding the cost of ice dam removal is the size of your home and, more specifically, the surface area of your roof. This is because a larger roof means there’s more square footage vulnerable to ice dam formation. Consequently, ice dam removal for larger houses or those with complex architectural designs may have a higher price tag compared to smaller homes or simpler structures.
2. The Method Of Removal
There are numerous techniques available to remove ice dams, such as using a roof rake or chipping away at the ice manually, using salt tablets, or even employing steam machines. Each strategy has its own set of benefits and drawbacks and will have a different price point.
3. Labor Costs
Labor costs have a considerable influence on the overall expense during ice dam removal. Surely, you’ve heard before: time is money – particularly when referring to professional services! The rate of labor always fluctuates, and it will change based on where you live.
Types of Methods for Ice Dam Removal and Associated Costs
There exist numerous methods to tackle the daunting task of ice dam removal. Each approach bears its own advantages, challenges, and costs.
1. Roof Rake Method and Cost Breakdown
Using a roof rake is a safer and less damaging alternative to chipping away at ice. This method involves using a long-handled rake to pull down snow and ice from the roof. While it is less risky than using sharp tools, care must still be taken to avoid damaging roofing materials.
Financially, this method is relatively economical since a roof rake is a one-time purchase, typically costing between $40 and $100. The labor cost, if you hire someone, may range from $100 to $200 per hour, depending on the complexity and size of the job.
2. Heating Cables and Cost Breakdown
Heating cables offer a gentler way to prevent and deal with ice dams. These cables are installed along the roof’s edge and in the gutters and downspouts to prevent ice from forming. The initial setup cost for heated cables can be significant, including the price of the cables and installation.
Depending on the roof size and complexity, the total cost can range from $500 to $1,500. However, once installed, the operational costs are relatively low, and they offer a long-term solution to ice dam issues.
3. Salt and Tablets Method and Cost Breakdown
Salt has been applied for centuries as an ice melting agent.
On average, the price for a tub of ice melt ranges between $20-$30 which are expected to last through the season.
Steam Method and Cost Breakdown
In contrast to other methods, this one specifically utilizes low-pressure, but high-temperature steam to gently melt your ice dams without damaging the roof underneath.
Of course, this service comes with its costs; in 2024, you can expect to pay anywhere from $400 to $600 per hour for professional steaming services due to their specialist equipment and knowledge requirements. Regardless of its higher upfront fees, it can be a worthy investment.
Deciding On A DIY Or Professional Ice Dam Removal
Now that you have an overview of the costs involved in ice dam removal, you’ll probably find yourself stuck between choosing the DIY route or hiring a professional ice dam removal service. This decision is important as it directly influences your expenses and safety.
Pros and Cons of DIY Ice Dam Removal
Performing ice dam removal by yourself has its advantages. Primarily, it may save you money upfront due to lower labor costs.
Cost-effective: No labor cost means reduced expenses.
Fulfillment: There’s undeniable satisfaction from completing these types of jobs manually.
However, bear in mind that these benefits come with their own risks:
Safety risks: Removing ice dams involves heights and potentially slippery conditions, which could lead to accidents if they’re not handled correctly.
Potential damage: Without adequate training and experience, you might cause harm to your roof, leading to more expensive repairs later on.
Efficiency: A lack of professional equipment could prolong the process, extending your house’s exposure to potential leaks and other forms of damage caused by ice dams.
The Benefits of Hiring a Professional for Ice Dam Removal
Hiring a reputable ice dam removal company provides several benefits despite higher initial costs compared to the DIY method:
Expertise: Professionals have ample experience dealing with different types of roofs and unique situations that ice dams cause.
Equipment Access: Trained specialists use high-end machines specifically designed for safe removal without damaging your roofing structure.
Inspection Services: A seasoned contractor can also help identify, and advise on preventive measures to reduce the chance of ice dams forming again in the future.
While both DIY methods and hiring professionals have their value, it’s essential to factor in all variables before making your decision.
Hire Professional Roofers For Ice Dam Removal In Buffalo
Buffalo’s Best Roofing Company LLC is a leading roofing contractor in Buffalo with an expert roofing team. Our roofers have extensive experience handling ice dams and all forms of damage that the winter weather can cause here in Buffalo. Be it ice dam removal, roof tarping, or roof storm damage, contact us at (716) 276-3673 to speak with a roofing professional about your roofing needs.