This 6,000 sq. ft. home was built in 1983 as an all-electric home. Fast forward 27 years later after the house was converted to gas heat and a new properly installed roof in 2010. Those are 2 x 10 rafters with an average of 2 to 4 inches of fiberglass insulation between them and no soffit baffles. 

 

We went from maybe R-11 to R-60 and the customer will get 100% ROI in less a year. 

 

Out of sight ... Out of mind ... Out of pocket $$$$$$$$ 

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Jim,

What was the incident that caused this problem to be looked at? Ice Dam previous years? Damage from Ice Dam to roof, thus the new roof in 2010? Energy Audit? HO noticed insulation deficit?

John Nicholas
John,

This is actually my neighbor's house that she bought in 2009. The previous owners did no maintenance on the exterior of the home for the last 15 years. The new owner and her son asked me to be their GC and give them a job list for the exterior work that needed to be done. My number one priority was to stop all possible water leaks into the shell of the home. The home still had the original 1983 roof with missing shingles and several of the 13 skylights were leaking. We had the original roof torn off, installed new flashing and ice guard in the valleys and all edges before the new shingles were put on. Five months later our area experienced the worst ice dams in 20 years and the neighbor calls to tell me the her new roof is leaking. I explained to her the leaking was probably due to heat loss through the roof that was melting the snow pack on the roof and letting the water under the snow pack run down to the cold edges where it was re-freezing. I then went into the attic for the first time and confirmed the lack of insulation and improper ventilation. Ice dams are usually not caused by roof issues but quickly turn into roof issues.

I had another customer that was also having ice dams issues with his home built in 2005 and we determined it was due to the gas furnace in his attic generating enough heat to melt the roof snow pack which is something very few builders think about before they place the furnace in an unconditioned attic space.
Jim,

Thanks! I was curious about how the problem was identified. I have not had one on my home or observed one during an audit. I have experienced them in a commercial setting. The building had 4 foot eves, and a indirectly conditioned attic, DT the water charged fire sprinkler system. The valley's were a mess, about 8 feet above the inside eve line. The ridge would be 21 feet horizontal from there.

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