Don't Fall For This TikTok Hack When Dealing With Ice This Winter

Snowy winters are always a source of joy and laughter as people take to the yard to play, but times like this can also turn dangerous if you don't pay attention to your house, particularly your roof. Snow tends to pile up on the edges of your roof, melting in the day and freezing back up in the night when the temperature drops below freezing. This repetitive action creates solid ice dams that make it impossible for melted snow and other debris to slide down off the roof. In a bid to get rid of the dams, some homeowners turn to social media for easy methods that'll work quickly. Unfortunately, there is one popular TikTok "hack" that you shouldn't fall for. The advice to lay pantyhose filled with ice melt on the dams is simply not effective.

Because the ice melt is contained in a compact position inside a sock, it won't melt fast enough, rendering this plan almost useless. Sure, the ice that comes in direct contact with the pantyhose may melt a little but it would only freeze back up again by the time it slides away from the pantyhose. Luckily, there are other ways that you can clear up that ice dam without resorting to bogus hacks.

Steaming is a better alternative to the pantyhose hack

Shoving a bag of ice melt into pantyhose will not only fail to thaw out your ice dam, but it will also put your home in jeopardy. Ice melt contains chemicals like sodium, magnesium, and calcium chloride which release heat to thaw out the ice, but they're corrosive. When they dissolve, they can seep down into the roof and damage the construction integrity of your home by corroding nails, concrete, and pipes. The ice melt may also flush out into your yard, dehydrating your vegetation and the ground. Getting rid of ice dams requires a method of approach that won't destroy your facilities, and steaming is your safest bet.

Steaming an ice dam involves heating cold water with a steaming machine and creating low-pressure steam that is then used to melt the problematic ice. This method is safer because it only melts the ice without affecting the gutter, your roof, or the surrounding environment. You only use hot water and no chemicals. Most experts will tell you not to DIY this and to get a professional who has experience in steaming ice dams. Furthermore, you can keep your gutters from freezing in winter by making sure you clean them regularly to remove organic debris like leaves and twigs. Installing a drip edge on your roof system can help channel water to your gutter and away from the vulnerable parts of your house, which can prevent ice dams from forming in the first place.