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Manserd Roof & Ice Issues

I own a Manserd roofed-house in Laramie, WY, where the winters are harsh and include many freeze-thaw cycles often in one day.

The snow and ice that melt on the manserd roof melt, freeze, create icicles, and mounds of ice both along the driveway and the front steps.

I had originally thought that it was that there was no flashing between the gutters and the upper roof, but I checked this summer, and it's there and properly sealed...

Anyone have any ideas?

((I have a photo of the icicles...but it won't let me post it))

Re: Manserd Roof & Ice Issues


The most common cause of ice damming is the lack of insulation in the attic, allowing attic temps to get too warm. Ideally, the actic should be similar in temp to the outside air. Your ventilation might also be too little, also allowing attic temps to rise too high. Under ventilating invites icing under the roof too! It is difficult to over insulate and ventilate an actic!

The homes that are properly insulated and vented are those with lots of snow on the roof!

Re: Manserd Roof & Ice Issues

I have about average insulation...about to the top of the rafters. I want to put in more, but simply can't afford to at this time.

I'm not sure what kind of venting I have, but I know it's not much. I know there are two normal, non-fanned vents about 1/3 the way in from the ends of the house. If I ever re-roof, I'll definately be putting in some temperature-controlled fans, larger ones, in order to help.

Should I consider installing vents in the bottom of the manserd areas?

Re: Manserd Roof & Ice Issues

I'm hearing this: you don't have classic ice-damming which causes interior damage, but rather you have your gutters freezing solid with ice and the melt runoff then drips and freezes along the base of the building.
It's really hard to keep an exposed metal gutter from freezing. You could try binding a heat cable to it and keeping it on during the day; same would hold for the downspouts, as they can freeze solid too (what's worse is they also split apart from the expansion).

Re: Manserd Roof & Ice Issues

No, it's not the gutters. The gutters catch the flow from the upper roof just fine. It's the snow from the actual manserd areas that's melting/freezing/dripping.

It's definately not classic ice-damming going on. I'm not sure there is a good solution since it's going to melt somehow...

Wish I could post a picture...

Re: Manserd Roof & Ice Issues

You should not have icicles forming. You need to better insulate your roof area to prevent warm air from leaving the living space and getting to the roof.

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