A BIG Reason Not to Throw That Little Salt Puck on Your Roof
Salt pucks and salt-filled pantyhose are unwise approaches to ice dam removal: They rarely work, and they damage your roof. (In fact, any form of DIY ice dam removal is unlikely to end well.)
There’s another reason not to throw salt on your roof, and it’s a BIG one: salty, chemical-filled water will almost certainly leak into your home.
Why? Because most often the folks that use salt pucks and/or salt-filled pantyhose already have a leaky roof, hence the reason they’re resorting to these dire straights DIY tactics. And the folks that don’t yet have a leaky roof, salt doesn’t usually melt ice quickly enough to prevent a roof leak from occurring. So if you’ve used salt pucks and you end up with a roof leak anyway (as I expect you will), the leaking water will carry some of the salt with it!
Fresh water is bad enough – but it’s Mr. Rogers compared to salty chemical water. Saltwater is highly corrosive (think wiring, appliances, and your new TV). It leaves even worse stains (like on your drywall). It discolors things (e.g. your furniture, carpets, woodworking, etc.). Saltwater destroys nearly everything it comes into contact with! So…you’ll go from fresh water leaking into your home, to a much worse scenario, highly corrosive saltwater leaking into your home. Even worse, you may not even be aware of the leak? You may think that you single-handedly saved your house from damage, but all the while, remaining salt and chemical residue are eating away at structural components of your home, corroding electrical wiring, etc.
You know how the streets look right after the winter, before the salt has washed away with the first rain of the spring? Well, a good portion of the interior of your home may look the same – except it won’t wash away.
Here’s a quote that may scare you:
Salt suspended in water is highly reactive because it carries an electrical charge. It can quickly penetrate a variety of materials and holds on tight once it gets there. That’s bad news for building materials, because salt is extremely corrosive, and corrosion is something you don’t want happening to structural components of your home, business, or other buildings.
You’re not going to get rid of the ice dam with a salt puck. The salt can’t melt it fast enough. If you’re worried enough to throw salt on your roof, you probably have leaks already, even if you don’t know about them. All the salt puck will accomplish is adding salt and chemicals to your leaks. You won’t save any money. You’ll pay more because your home will sustain even more damage – and you’ll probably still need professional ice dam removal in the end anyway.
Step away from the salt!