FRANKLIN, Tenn. (WKRN) – The combination of snow, ice and rain has created some big problems for Middle Tennesseans called “ice dams.”

Most people in the area have never even heard of ice damming, let alone experienced it at their homes.

Kim Broussard of Franklin woke up to water damage in her kitchen Saturday morning.

“We have a line on the ceiling that is starting to appear and it looks like water is starting to come through,” Broussard told News 2.

Broussard, a Farmers Insurance agent, didn’t know much about ice damming either until she started receiving calls from her clients.

“My phone has been ringing off the hook since six o’clock Saturday morning with clients calling wanting to know what to do. They’re all surprised with it and have never dealt with it before,” she said.

Ice damming occurs when you have an ice buildup on the roof of your home.

“The water runs off into the gutters and then it freezes and then the ice, you’ve got the snow and ice accumulation, which begins to melt because of the heat from inside of your home,” explained general contractor Eric Peltier with Armored Home Improvement.

He continued, “When it gets to the gutters there’s no heat there to basically melt it. The water hits there and basically starts backing up inside the house which is causing the little brown spots a lot of people are seeing on their ceilings.”

Once the damage is done, there’s not much you can do.

Experts suggest having someone clean off your roof, call your insurance company and get a contractor up there.

The big question is: will your insurance company cover the damage?

It depends. Broussard said it’s a case by case basis. Most policies do not specifically include ice dams but water damage is usually covered.

Like her clients, she’s learning as she goes.

To prevent ice damming in the future, Peltier suggests increasing ventilation and adding insulation in the attic of your home.