Throughout the winter, several weather-related events can result in damage to your home. One of the biggest of these threats during the cold months occurs when the gutters around your home start to freeze. This can lead to any number of issues that you must deal with to keep everyone warm and safe. Here are a few of the most common dangers of frozen gutters and how to stop them.

Damage on the Roof

Frozen gutters can cause damage to your roof in many different ways. As water freezes, it begins to expand, causing gutters to separate from the home until they eventually fall off completely. There’s also the possibility of the weight from the ice and snow becoming too much for your roof to handle. When this occurs, it can cause damage to the load-bearing beams, weakening the integrity of the roof. Shingles can also fall away, offering another opportunity for moisture to work its way into your home.

Structural Instability

Another of the most common dangers of frozen gutters is that they affect the structural integrity of the home. If the gutters are clogged or frozen, water will seek other paths to escape, including draining over the top of the gutters and down the side of the home. This can lead to instability in the walls and cause water to pool at the base of the house. In turn, this can cause cracks in the foundation and allow moisture to enter the home, which can lead to mold infestations and flooded rooms if you don’t take the proper precautions.

Falling Ice

As the weather fluctuates during the winter, there will be days when the temperature goes above freezing. This can lead to water unfreezing and forming icicles on the gutters. These icicles can be dangerous if they fall from the roof, threatening anybody unfortunate enough to be standing under them.

The best method for handling frozen gutters is to prevent the buildup of ice in them in the first place. There are several tricks for how to handle frozen gutters, but keeping them clear of debris will encourage water to flow freely through them and prevent a dangerous climb onto the roof to attempt repairs in the cold.

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.