GARDEN CITY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Warming temperatures after a string of bitter cold days may feel like a welcome relief, but not if your home floods as a result.
The big thaw is turning into a homeowner’s big headache.
“Our phones are crazy,” All Weather Guard, Bill Bonell said.
Ice dams formed because heat from homes melts snow on the roof which then re-freezes in cold gutters.
Roof and gutter companies have been inundated because icy water is leaking into homes.
“More snow and ice, and snow is melting in the water. When it hits that dam it can go anywhere and it backs up in the house,” John Mahland, Spotless Gutter Cleaning and Repair, said.
Ice damming can be a problem even if it’s never happened before in your home.
CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff learned that the hard way in her own home when icy water started mysteriously seeping through her carpet.
The culprit turned out to be thick chunks of ice damming up the gutters.
To prevent damage, remove snow from gutters right after a storm, and shore up insulation to stop heat from escaping through the roof or invest in electrical heat, low voltage wiring on the roof.
“It melts the snow so it doesn’t accumulate and end up in your house,” an expert explained.
The big thaw is also hard on pipes. One Garden City home almost suffered a disaster.
“Something sounded strange. I tried the faucet, and no water,” Bill McTiernan said.
Frozen pipes were found in the nick of time in a Levittown home too.
Plumbers say homeowners often don’t even realize pipes have frozen and with the thaw comes flooding.
“You’re going to find the burst pipes, you’re going to see where things are leaking,” David Lewis said.
“Some people have bathrooms in the house they never use, so it’s definitely wise to walk around periodically and start running faucets,” Bobby Gramman said.
If no water comes out, leave them cracked to release pressure and prevent a flood that will turn the big thaw into a big expense.