All the ice and snow that fell across the Ozarks is causing some problems for homeowners.  The melting causes roof leaks even when shingles are in good shape.

As the ice and snow on our roofs begins to melt, it creates beautiful icicles, but it can also create an ugly problem called an ice dam.

At Shirley Dodd's house, the pounding was a welcome sound on Thursday.  A crew from Dale's Roofing was gently breaking the ice on her roof.  It should fix the unsightly problem that gave her a rude awakening. 

"The area is pretty much directly over my bed, so I looked up and said, 'Oh my goodness, I believe that's a wet spot up there,'" Dodds said.

Right along the outside wall, Dodds found not just one, but multiple wet spots on her ceiling. 

"This is something you never want to ignore because, if you do, it just gets worse, and it can lead to awful things like wet rot and ruined insulation in your attic," Dodds said.

"We deal with it fairly often during the winter, mainly when we get some ice or freezing precipitation that froze to the roof," said Jeff Elam, a sales manager at Dale's Roofing.

Dale's Roofing has had nearly 200 calls for the same problem in the last few days. 

It hadn't happened in the nearly 14 years that Dodds has lived in her house, but she's quickly learned about ice dams. 

"Which means the ice has formed a ridge, and it's sealing the water in, and the water has no place to go, so it's backing up under your shingles.  And ultimately it will find a way into your house," she said.

It's caused by heat from the house rising into the attic and causing melting on the roof, with the water coming to a halt on the freezing cold eaves.

"We just go up there and chip away the ice, brush off the snow, get the water a channel it can go through so it can run off instead of run in," said Elam.

Dodds is thankful for a quick fix, but wishes Mother Nature would pitch in too. 

"Melt it quickly!" she said.

Dale's Roofing says the attic insulation should dry out okay and not need to be replaced.   Whether the ceiling needs repairing depends how bad the damage is.  Dale's says you should call a professional to break up the ice, or you could damage your roof.  They say a rubber membrane can be put under shingles to prevent this problem. 

By researching online, I learned keeping your attic cold with plenty of insulation on the attic floor and good attic ventilation should help prevent the melting that leads to ice dams.  I also found an ice melt product specifically for roofs that said it isn't harmful to roofing materials or vegetation.