Winter Advisory to Gutter Helmet Owners in & around Ann Arbor, MI

During the winter, it’s not unusual to notice that icicles have formed on your Gutter Helmet system. In some cases, this may be normal and caused by the sun melting snow on the roof. However, in many cases, it may be a sign that your Gutter Helmet is trying to tell you that there is a more serious problem happening. 


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Why These Icicles Form

These icicles generally are a good sign that your Gutter Helmet system is doing its job of keeping ice and snow out of your gutters. However, a major icicle formation signals that there is significant heat loss from the living quarters of your home into the attic. 


Unfortunately, this is particularly a problem here in Michigan. The Department of Energy requires Michigan attics to contain insulation at an R-49, yet the Michigan Residential Building Code calls for only an R-30. This means that almost every home in Michigan is under-insulated. Homes that lack the proper amount of insulation and ventilation are uncomfortable to live in and are expensive to heat and cool.


Basically, you are wasting energy dollars to heat the roof, which causes snow to melt and roll down to the eaves, becoming icicles and ice dams. 

The Problem With Ice Dams and Icicles on Your Gutter Helmet System

When your home doesn’t have enough insulation, heat escapes into the attic and warms the underside of the shingles, causing the snow to melt on the roof. The melted water can work its way under the shingles and drop into the attic, ruining your insulation, drywall, and paint. 


Then, as the water runs down to the coldest part of the roof (the eave), it refreezes. This causes icicles or ice dams to form whether you have gutters or not. The only difference is that sometimes gutters will “mask” the problem because it takes so long for them to fill up with ice. Homeowners who have Gutter Helmet will most likely notice icicles sooner, as the ice has nowhere else to go. 


Either way, icicles and ice buildup may be an indication that you are paying way too much on your heating bills. Additionally, icicles may become a hazard when they begin to melt. As the temperature drops, the water from melted icicles may refreeze and form a type of ice rink, which is especially dangerous around steps and walkways. 

Solving the Problem: Adding Insulation and Ventilation

Adding insulation to your home’s attic is the least expensive and best way to reduce or eliminate dangerous ice dams from forming at your eaves. However, that’s not always enough. It’s just as important for your attic to be able to “breathe.” 


You can maintain proper ventilation through the use of soffit venting under your gutter area and roof venting at your roof’s peak. When ventilation is not maintained in the correct proportion, the heat and moisture will be trapped inside the attic. This is the main reason that roofs and shingles age and fail prematurely. 


Unfortunately, sometimes adding insulation and ventilation is not enough. Homes designed with cathedral or vaulted ceilings make it impossible to add insulation or ventilation. Factors such as extra wide eaves and the direction the house faces can have an impact that cannot be overcome and homeowners have had no choice but to live with the problems associated with icicles and ice dams. 

Another Solution: Adding Helmet Heat®

Atlas Home Improvement is proud to offer Helmet Heat®, a unique solution to ice problems caused by these difficult or impossible-to-solve situations. Helmet Heat is an advanced self-regulating heating cable system that is designed to be installed with Gutter Helmet. 


The Helmet Heat system works to warm the Gutter Helmet panels, gutters, and downspouts and will substantially reduce icicles and ice formations. The Helmet Heat system is GFCI protected and can be installed at any time. 

Protect Your Home This Winter

If you are experiencing any of the conditions described above, with or without gutter guards in Ann Arbor, we recommend having one of our experts come out to inspect and evaluate your home. 


It may well be that your home needs more insulation, ventilation, or Helmet Heat! Let out team of experts install Gutter Helmets to your home. Contact us today to set up a free, no-obligation inspection. 

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"WOW! Our gutters look great! Josh And Kamrin arrived right on time and got quickly to work. They were very friendly and didn't mind our 6 year old grandson asking questions. I would recommend Atlas to our friends."

– Kathy S.

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"I have been impressed with Atlas home improvement they do things the way I would. Kelly was our installer and was unbelievably hard-working very conscientious and even went the extra mile and called in a grizzly Veteran plumber when presented with a problem. We have used Atlas before and will again soon!"

– Tony M.

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"Just a quick note to thank Atlas Home Improvement for the new Gutter Helmet install we received today . From the sales representative Hunter who answered all our question about the product and the company itself to the office personnel that scheduled and kept us informed about the date and times the install crew would arrive (Brook). Kevin and Rick did a great job installing and cleaning up afterwards . Thank you Rick for calling us the morning of install just to verify that indeed you would be arriving shortly . Undoubtably one of the best companies I have dealt with . Atlas made it so very easy to keep myself Safe and my home secure from gutter water damage ."

– Harold B.

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"This was our second experience with Atlas. The shower in our last home was truly a primary selling feature. We returned to Atlas because of the quality of the job and the professionalism of the install. We were happy to see the same installers we had at our other house three years ago arrive here today. Chad and Bill did an excellent job. We received the same professionalism and quality we expected. They arrived with all the materials they would need, no hidden surprises, quality materials. They truly live up to everything they promise!"

– Rob R.

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"Chris and Brandon did a great job on my Kitchen, I love how it looks! Chris had to come back to fix some things and he fixed all of it."

– Linda B.

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"Recently, Atlas Home Improvement finished the second phase of my bathroom remodel. Matt and Chad were here every morning on time, stated in their morning phone call. They were friendly, efficient, knew their job and the job site was always in order and clean. They even went out of their way to make sure I was aware of all aspects of the job. They were GREAT!!! This is a great company!!! Very clean and considerate while putting in my new shower. Time the sales consultant was wonderful and really listened to what I want and was never pushy or tried to sell me something I didn't want. David did a wonderful job installing my shower. Great product they sell. I recommend this company highly!"

– Donna P.

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"Dave put in a stair lift for me and I was very, very pleased with the whole experience. He assessed the situation with an eye on my safety and recommended changing the side of the staircase the lift was to be installed on. He did the installation quietly and quickly and without creating any mess. And he made sure I understood how the equipment worked and watched me test ride it. I could not have been more satisfied with the whole process. I would highly recommend Atlas to any senior looking to modify their home so that they can age in place."

– Dorrie R.

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"We were experiencing temperature problems with our brand new walk-in tub, in that the temperature would not get very hot. After a call to Atlas we were scheduled by the office staff for an appointment within 2 days, which we very much appreciated. Dave arrived on time and immediately diagnosed the problem - and he quickly fixed it. Dave was very professional, pleasant, friendly, and knowledgeable. Our problem has now been fixed! Thank you Atlas for having such a great installation, office, and repair staff."

– Norv S.

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"We had our shower completely re-done by Dave. It was a custom job that involved replacing a sub floor and some plumbing issues. They were friendly, hard workers, our shower turned out perfect! I strongly recommend Atlas Home Improvement they stand by their work!"

– Sherry G.

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"Our dealings with Atlas Home Improvement have been nothing but a delight. We had booked them through Home Depot Home Services which had a salesman come out and was easy to deal with and took his time to explain all of the steps to the process. Atlas delivered the exact way they had promised we were in the loop knowing when our materials were ordered when they came in and to finally setting up the appointment. The workmanship was 5 star excellent and we could not have been happier with our new shower enclosure it really made a difference!"

– Sharron R.

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