Why Proper Gutter Maintenance Should Be On Your Chore List
Owning a home comes with numerous responsibilities, from mortgage payments to upkeep. While most homeowners know the importance of keeping their trees trimmed and smoke alarms working, many overlook the importance of maintaining their gutters. Gutter maintenance may not be on the top of your spring cleaning checklist, but it plays a critical role in protecting your home.
Here’s what you need to know about proper gutter maintenance and why it should be part of your regular home upkeep plan.
The Purpose of Your Gutters
You might think that your gutter system is just a series of fixtures on the edge of your roof that catch water, but they are a critical part of protecting your home’s foundation. The main job of a gutter system is to guide rainwater off your roof and away from your home’s foundation. When water is allowed to flow from your roof freely, it can erode soil and seep down along your foundation, increasing the risk of structural instability or leaks in your basement, crawl space, or subfloor.
Gutters also help direct water away from vegetation, landscaping, driveways, and other areas vulnerable to erosion. They even aid in protecting your home’s siding from pounding water from your roof.
No matter what type of gutters you have, keeping them working is crucial. Luckily, you are not on your own. The Hibbard Roofing & Construction team is here to guide you along the way. Give us a call to schedule a free consultation today.
Gutter Maintenance Tip #1: Gutter Cleaning
Clogged gutters can cause a myriad of problems. For starters, once a gutter is clogged, it won’t guide water away from your home. If the clog becomes big enough, it can cause your gutters to sag or even break. A clogged gutter is just like having no gutters at all.
Experts agree that homeowners should clean their gutters at least twice a year. The most common times to do this chore are spring and fall. If you live somewhere with a large number of trees, you may need to clean your gutters more often.
Some homeowners like to try DIY gutter cleaning in hopes of saving money. A simple garden hose and flowing water can assist with a quick and easy gutter cleaning. You may need a professional gutter cleaner to use a plumbing snake or high-pressure water to dislodge compacted leaves, pine needles, and twigs from your gutter system for more serious clogs.
Gutter Maintenance Tip #2: Install a Gutter Cover
A gutter cover or gutter helmet keeps large pieces of debris from getting into your gutter system. If you live somewhere with tons of trees with leaves or needles, a gutter cover will reduce what makes it into your actual gutter. Perforated screens snap onto the front or top of the gutter to prevent larger objects from getting through.
While your gutters may not clog as much with a gutter helmet, the covers themselves can become quite packed. Make sure you inspect them to remove excess debris. Be careful when examining helmets and covers, as they are prime locations for bees and wasps to set up nests.
Gutter Maintenance Tip #3: Check Your Gutters’ Positioning
Your gutters' angle (pitch) is critical in how they operate. Water will not flow through the gutter and into the downspout without the appropriate slope. If the angle is too great, water may flow too forcefully and cause damage to your yard, landscaping, or sidewalks.
The standard slope for gutters is a quarter of an inch for every 10 feet of gutter. Over time, the hardware that attaches gutters to your roof (hangers) may loosen, and you may be able to simply tighten the screws to restore the proper pitch. In extreme cases, you may need to hire a Lafayette roof repair company to rehang the gutters or add additional hangers.
Gutter Maintenance Tip #4: Upgrade with Gutter Guards
Even with a solid gutter system, you may experience a few issues after heavy rain. For example, you may notice dirty spots on the side of your home or landscaping has been disturbed. These issues come from either water splashing from the gutters onto your siding or exiting the downspouts with too great force. Gutter guards are splash guards that help keep water in the gutters.
That means you don’t have to worry about water overflowing onto your roof and potentially damaging your shingles, water pooling against the fascia, or water collecting too close to your home’s foundation. You also get the added benefit of reducing the chance of mold/mildew or pests creating a home in your gutter system.
Gutter Maintenance Tip #5: Bring in the Pros
The idea of getting out the ladder and climbing onto your roof to inspect, clean, and repair your gutters may not be how you want to spend your weekends. While gutter and roof maintenance may be essential to home ownership, you don’t have to take it on yourself.
Companies like Hibbard Roofing & Construction have the equipment, experience, and expertise to handle all your gutter and roofing maintenance needs, from gutter cleaning to complete gutter installation. No other residential or commercial roofing company can match our commitment to customer service, stellar workmanship, or everyday low prices.
Don’t let gutter maintenance control your free time. Call Hibbard Roofing & Construction to set up your free consultation today.