Ice Dams Number One Problem For Oklahoma Homeowners After Blizzard

Wednesday, February 16th 2011, 9:23 pm
By: News On 6

Emory Bryan, News On 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- It was slightly warmer weather, after the deep freeze, that led to lots of insurance claims after the snowstorm.

Insurance companies believe they'll have more claims coming as adjusters catch up.

According to the State Insurance Department, companies reported 550 claims filed as of last Friday, February 11, 2011.  The claims ranged from frozen pipes to roof collapses. The number one claim was for water damage created by "ice dams" on the roof.

"I would say we'd have close to 500 calls ourselves," DeWayne Corvin, with Decor Construction & Roofing, said.

Roofing company owner DeWayne Corvin says many of those calls involve ice dams, when ice builds on a roof and pushes water under the shingles. That causes leaks, and even the fanciest roofs are prone to problems.

2/1/2011 Related Story: Ice Dams Pose Potential Problems For Green Country Homeowners

"In fact, if you look at the roof with the tile, and it's just a place for ice and water and snow to just be trapped, so a tile roof will actually ice dam more," he said.

Corvin says there is an easy solution that's common up north, but rare here because it's not required by the building code.  A rubbery underlayment, he says, will waterproof areas on a roof that are prone to ice dams, like the edges and valleys.

"Shingles are water shedding. When ice and snow builds up in the vulnerable areas, the valleys, the pipes, the penetrations, you're going to have something there, underneath to give it protection," he said.

Corvin says a water proofing layer to protect from ice dams adds only $200 or $300 to the cost of a roof. Even though it's not required in Oklahoma, he thinks it should be.