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Ice & Water Shield and When to Use it

What is Ice and Water Shield?

Ice and Water shield (I&W) is a self-adhered roofing underlayment. The self-adhered side is composed of a highly adherent backing that is installed directly to the decking, which prevents it from shifting or slipping. The top side is primarily made of a rubberized membrane of asphalt coated on top with a slip/tear resistant plastic-based layer. I&W is superior to standard roofing felt paper because it creates a waterproof barrier to prevent leaks that can be caused by Colorado’s constantly changing weather.

Some jurisdictions in Colorado require I&W as part of their roofing codes. In these jurisdictions, the I&W must be installed on the outermost edge of all eaves and extend 24” past the interior firewall. This ensures that if ice damming should occur, water would have to travel 2 feet up the slope of the roof before it can reach the decking and potentially leak into the home.

ice and snow melting off a slanted roof

When Should it Be Used?

Most leaks on any roof are caused by penetrations through the roof. A penetration is anything on the roof that punctures the surface of the decking. Pipes, vents, skylights and chimneys are the worst offending penetrations when it comes to leaks. In addition to penetrations any area where conjoining angles of the roof create a valley are a serious leak concern as well.

A simple solution to avoid potential leaks is to cover all penetrations and valleys with Ice and Water shield. At Mile High Roofing, Inc., it is our company policy to cover all penetrations and valleys with I&W. Other roofing companies offer I&W as an upgrade, charging clients more than standard roofing felt paper. We offer I&W to our clients for free. It may cost us a bit more money, but it also gives our customers the peace of mind knowing that our roofs won’t leak. Our dedication to providing quality materials and services is why we also offer a Lifetime Labor Warranty on a complete roof install.

At Mile High Roofing, Inc. 100% customer satisfaction is our top priority. Contact Us today to find out more about Ice and Water shield roofing and how we can protect your roof from leaks, guaranteed.

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