Our Ice Dam Heat Cable Products
The Ice Dam Company has been in the business of removing ice dams, roof ice, gutter ice and snow for 30 years. We understand snow and ice as it pertains to your roof and gutters. We are also experts in preventing such ice build-up through the implementation of an arsenal of tools and tactics, rooted in our knowledge of roofs and ice build-up. There are a few recommended areas of focus when considering ice dam prevention, one of which is ice dam heat cable.
The Best Ice Dam De-icing Cable
Over the years, we’ve experimented with, and installed dozens of different ice dam heat tape and de-icing heat cables. We’ve learned what comprises an effective, quality-made heat cable, and what equates to an inferior heat cable that will ultimately cost you. Unfortunately, the quality of cable found at big-box hardware and home improvement stores is not the best choice for efficiently dealing with ice dam prevention. The following is what we have learned, and what criteria we have used to find the best cable manufactured for our customers.
Cable Build Quality
One look at the Ice Dam Heat Tape we use next to the alternative, and the difference in quality is clear. Ice Dam Company sells de-icing cable made from high-quality materials for maximum effectiveness and long-lasting usage. They are more substantial (more then twice as thick), and they are made of better materials.
It starts with the core heating element: Our cables use 16-gauge tinned copper bus wire, while cheap heat cable contains a single coiled, low-gauge bus wire. This allows our cable to reach more effective temperatures while lasting longer; better protecting your home from damage, and preventing breakdown –saving you the cost of frequent cable replacement. The core bus wires of our heat cable is then encased in a fire resistant carbon core, and wrapped in a polyolefin thermoplastic jacket to maximize durability and safety.
Next, our heat cable has a layer of braided tinned-copper mesh to effectively distribute heat throughout the wires. Cheap ice dam heat cable contains only a thin, loose layer of small copper brush. Our layer of braided copper is then wrapped in a UV-resistant, rugged polyolefin jacket. This prevents quick breakdown from the sun’s harmful rays, making our heat cable last even longer.
Self-Regulating Heat Cable
Heat Cable purchased in big-box stores is constant wattage cable. This means: it is always on. It is always drawing full power and is costing you peak energy expenses, which –over the length of a season– can add up, huge. Thought you were saving money on that cable you got at that home improvement store? Guess again.
Our heat tape is Self-Regulating. That means that as the temperature gets colder they create more heat by drawing more power, and when it gets warmer they create less heat by drawing less power. This allows you to consume only the energy you need to help protect your roof from damage caused by ice dams.
How can it do this?
The core of our ice dam heat cable is encased in a material that is, in part, carbon. As ambient temperatures decrease, the material shrinks pulling the two bus wires closer to each other, creating the electrical reaction which makes the cables heat up. When ambient temperatures remain above 40° (give or take a few degrees) the inner core doesn’t shrink, preventing higher temps to occur within the cable.