There are some parts of your home you don’t think about more than once a quarter (or year, we don’t judge). And yet they need a certain amount of love and attention to keep working right. This is one of those yard chores we dread, but not doing it has bigger consequences than you may think.
Fall’s a wonderful time of year. You can smell the change in the air, and the new colors are a feast for your eyes. It’s also a wet, slightly gross time, and those brilliant leaves turn brown and soggy. As the seasons pass and rainboots turn into swimsuits, your gutter is getting impacted with a clog.
The climate where you live will determine leaf-fall. In addition to the volume of trees, different trees renew at different rates. Your house’s specific location can also affect this. If you’re lucky to enjoy lots of nature and tree cover, the overhang can make you susceptible to gutter clogs.
All of these factors will impact how often you need a proper gutter cleaning. For many people, it will be seasonal, but others can go as long as a year.
When performing properly, gutters guide the flow of rainwater off of your roof and back to the ground. But if they’re clogged, rainwater can sit and each rainfall can create a bigger puddle. The excess water can soak into your home, causing mold, mildew and water damage. This poses a huge headache to homeowners.
Water damage to the roof can look like peeling, grimy or missing shingles. If you can see it, it’s even worse underneath. This can lead to rot and leaks. If it gets bad, you may need to repair or even replace your roof – all options that are than prevention.
Water damage can spread to your house and even your foundation. Needing somewhere to go, the water cascades down your exterior wall. Siding is designed to be water-resistant, but like most things, it’s not waterproof. It can only take so much. So an excess of water tumbling out of your gutter is bound to break through. This moisture can get under the soil and seep into the foundation.
Roof damage can creep up on you. By the time you notice it, it may even threaten the integrity of your home. And the damage from an untended gutter can cause spread to your roof and the rest of your house.
Nature has an amazing way of finding its way into everything. Leave open your window and a moth will fly in. Leave a picture frame untouched and a delicate, sparkling cobweb will form. It would almost be beautiful if it wasn’t so annoying.
By the same token, a clogged gutter can become host to pests and vermin. Bugs, bees and even rodents are always looking for an opportunity to nest somewhere, and your clogged gutter can look quite attractive to them. If this becomes the case for you, the problem will go beyond an issue of water, mold, and mildew. Then it’s an infestation of pests which will cost you even more.
Many homeowners choose to gutter guards to fix these problems. These are screens that, like a pasta colander, let some things in while keeping others out. But gutter covers can’t replace a regular gutter cleaning. For one thing, some debris can still get in. And they don’t eliminate the need to call the professionals, since you may need assistance installing and uninstalling them anyway.
As you can see, the only real option is a good old-fashioned gutter cleaning. There are a number of ways to clean your gutters.
Leaf blower: Point a leaf blower at the leaves and watch them fly away just like when you’re cleaning up the yard.
Power washer: There’s nothing like the before and after of a good pressure wash. Buy or rent a power washer and let your frustrations out on those pesky leaves.
Garden hose: Short of a power washer, a garden hose will do just as well.
Wet/dry vacuum: One of the most annoying parts about clearing the gutters is all the clutter ends up on your yard in the process. This hack takes care of that.
Dirty gutters are a breeding ground for pests to tear up your roof. If it’s already too late, you can always have your roof be replaced. Learn more about how Feldco roofing can help by getting a free quote today.