5 Free Ways to Save Money on Ice Dam Removal
I’ve saved homeowners much more money by educating them on removing ice dams than by offering discount coupons on ice dam removal.
Why? Ice dam removal companies charge by the hour. If they have to spend time doing these DIY tasks, you’ll pay them more instead of saving money removing ice dams.
You’re more likely to get the professional ice dam removal help you need if you know there are steps you can take to make it more affordable and make the process go smoother.
I’ve collected my best money-saving tips. Here are five ways to save money on ice dam removal that you can do right after you book your appointment.
1. Create a path to running water
Do your best to make sure we have fast access to water. You could let us dig our way to the water spigot or spend time trying to find it. You could pay us to thaw out your spigot or to do all of that shoveling. We won’t complain.
Or you can save 30 minutes or more by shoveling a path for us, making sure you can identify the correct valve for us to turn on (ask someone else in your house if you don’t know), and maybe even attempting to thaw the spigot yourself.
Believe it or not, a hairdryer can work pretty well to thaw frozen pipes, and you can often do it from inside.
2. Clear the perimeter
Move valuable objects away from your overhangs.
We’re happy to move them for you, but if you move them first, then you’re not paying us to haul things back and forth. Also, you know which giant piles of snow likely contain your “stuff,” whereas we have no way of knowing that.
Soon, huge chunks of ice will be sliding off your roof. If there’s anything in your yard you don’t want to be crushed, please move it a good 15 feet outside of the hard-hat zone.
3. Move your car
Ideally, you’ll park your wheels in the street. You can also put it in the garage, but if you put it in the garage, please make sure you don’t have to leave your garage today.
Once we get set up, it is a Herculean undertaking for us to move our truck so that you can get your car out of the driveway, and of course, you’ll need to pay for that time.
Once we turn on that water faucet, we can’t stop steaming. Even a 10-second delay can freeze our equipment solid.
You’re essentially going to send us through the whole take-down process (i.e. filling our steamer and hoses with antifreeze). Then, you’re going to force us to go through the entire set-up process all over again. It will be the most expensive trip down your driveway you’ve ever made.
4. Roof-rake as much snow as you safely can
Every square foot of snow you rake and remove will save you money.
Yes, you’ll have to put on your coat and hat, get a little cold, and push and pull that roof rake. But would you rather pay several hundred dollars (or more!) for the ice dam removal people to remove every inch of snow from your roof?
Get a head-start before they show up and you can save a boatload of money.
5. Crank up the heat before we arrive
Think about turning up the heat to above 80 degrees roughly five to six hours before your ice dam pro arrives.
You’re going to warm up the attic, which will warm up your roof from the underside. This increases the likelihood that the ice will pop loose from the shingles more easily, making it much easier and quicker to remove.
Like many shortcuts in life, however, this one comes with a few caveats:
- It won’t prevent or remove ice dams.
- It will make an active leak, if you’ve got one, worse.
If you don’t have ice dam professionals on the way, then a hot roof is the very last thing you want. You should only turn up the heat if you know we’re on the way.
Tip: Ice dam removal costs are based on time
Most of these tips boil down to understanding that once your ice dam removal technician arrives, he is on the clock. It doesn’t matter what he’s doing once he gets there.
Other homeowners are likely waiting for his help, and any time spent messing with your water spigot delays others and costs you money. If you want to save money, simply make sure you’re not paying for activities you easily could have taken care of on your own.
We’re more than happy to take care of anything and everything for you, no problem at all. We just want to educate you on the various ways you could save money should you find value in doing some things yourself.
Bonus suggestion: see How to Hire a Cheap Ice Dam Removal Company and Have It End Well