Source of Winter Leak

I live in the NE and own a Dutch Colonial Style house. These houses have a gambrel-style roof on top, and small secondary roofs that jut out perhaps two or three feet and are located between the first and second floors. Rain water runs off the top roof (no gutters) and strikes the secondary roof, which is guttered. I have addressed ice dam issues eariler this winter, where a huge slog of ice covered the secondary roof and the gutters In one location the house juts out under the secondary roof and contains a window seat. At this point the soffit is very short or almost non existent which compounds ice dam issues. A persistent leak has occurred over the window seat. We had a thaw, the gutters were unclogged and the ice dam was thoroughly removed. The roof over the window seat was free of all snow, although melting snow from the main roof was still dripping water on the secondary roof. Then a sudden hard freeze. The SR became coated with a sheet of ice and the leak resumed. Where is the water entering now? There is no more huge ice dam and the gutters are free, although there is ice along the bottom edge of the bottom row of shingles. Maybe this acts exactly like what happened earlier with the heavy ice and iced-over gutter, but it looks so much less likely. I note that there isn 't much of a drip edge there, if any. Would a long drip edge have prevented this, or could water likely be backing up anywhere within the icy area covering the shingles? I bought some heat cable but wasn't sure this would do much for an icing situation. Advice much appreciated! (Apologies for not using a lot of the correct terminology!) Frank
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MUST HAVE DRIP EDGE.
if your putting on a new roof its best to use that membrame material rather felt paper.
then add heat tape and while you at it hows the attic ventilation? thats a major cause of ice dams.......
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Might be the result of a reroofing by an inexperienced contractor. A gambrel roof done over like a standard sloped roof just doesn't work. The Grace underlayment ice dam materials and others will have installation recommendations which will help you when you have done over correctly next summer.
Joe
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