Gutters control the flow of water so your property doesn’t suffer from water damage. If you live in an area with many trees, snow or wildlife, debris can get stuck inside your gutters and prevent water from draining correctly. Cleaning your gutters helps you have a safe, healthy home and increase the life span of your roof. This guide can help you learn about the importance of gutter maintenance to better take care of these components.
Signs You Need to Clean Your Gutters
In general, it helps to have your gutters professionally cleaned about twice a year — once after the leaves have fallen and after the snow has thawed. However, depending on where you live, you may have to clean them more often. Consider the following factors that can help you determine how often you should clean gutters:
1. Nearby Trees
The large trees you may have near your property can shed leaves and twigs around your lawn and even in your gutters in the fall. Certain types of trees — such as eucalyptus or pine — can also drop small needles throughout the year.
Consider which trees are close to your gutters, whether they’re hanging directly over them or the debris can easily float in the wind onto your roof and gutters. If you have many trees around your property, you might want to clean your gutters more often to make sure this debris doesn’t get stuck in the gutters.
2. Frequent Storms
If you live in an area that experiences frequent storms and low temperatures at any point in the year, you might want to get your gutters cleaned more often. After your area experiences a snowstorm or cold rainstorm, consider inspecting your gutters for standing water and cleaning them as necessary.
Snow, ice or excess rainwater can get stuck and freeze, obstructing the flow of water. Heavy ice and water pools can weigh down your gutters and cause them to sag from the additional weight. Storms may also knock loose more leaves and twigs from the trees near your property.
3. Pests in the Gutters
You may hear the occasional critter scurrying in your gutters, trying to escape a predator or looking for food. If pests have set up camp in your gutters, that usually means there are enough leaves and debris to help them make a cozy home. Birds can also frequently visit clogged areas to retrieve nesting materials.
When you’ve noticed squirrel or mice visiting your gutters often, you might want to get them cleaned. If you hear rustling or chirping in your gutters, these pests may be close enough to make their way into your home through your roof, destroying your valuables and contaminating your food supply.
4. Plants Growing in the Gutters
Dirt blows in the wind and ends up on your roof. In the rain, the soil washes off your roof and into the gutters. The concave shape of these channels creates a moist environment where plants can flourish.
This debris can accumulate and create enough soil for seeds to grow if you don’t clean your gutters frequently enough. You may want to remove the dirt and leaves from your gutters so these plants don’t attract pests and weigh down the system.
Reasons to Clean Your Gutters
Gutter cleaning is necessary for protecting your home. Since gutters control the flow of water away from your home, you need to make cleaning your gutters a priority to prevent water damage from affecting the interior and exterior of your home. Consider the following reasons why gutter cleaning is so important:
1. Protects Your Roof and Gutters From Leaks
Cleaning the debris out of your gutters helps safeguard your property and save money on costly repairs. Blocked drains prevent rainwater from running away from your home. Instead, the water sits in your gutters and overflows to your roof and siding. As a result, this moisture can cause wood rot that allows water to leak into your home, destroying your attic ceiling, insulation and walls.
Your gutters’ underlayment can become damaged under the weight of excess standing water. When these components accumulate debris, they can sag, wearing on the brackets holding them to the house. You can save money on a potential gutter replacement if you clean your gutters frequently.
2. Prevents Pest Infestations
Gutters with leaves and other debris can attract pests of all kinds, such as birds, rodents and bugs. If there are cracks anywhere in your home, these pests can make their way into your home and contaminate your valuables and food supply. Cleaning your gutters is a simple way to prevent insects and wildlife from taking over your property. This cost-effective habit can keep your home clean and save you hundreds of dollars in future pest control services.
3. Limits the Risk of a Cracked Foundation
When water cannot flow properly, it may pool around the foundation of the home. When the temperature drops, this flood of water can trickle into small cracks in your concrete foundation and expand and contract as the moisture freezes and thaws. As the concrete foundation cracks, these cracks compromise your property’s integrity and provide an open invitation to pests. If you clean out your gutters, you can reduce your risk of experiencing severe structural damage and paying costly repairs.
4. Keeps Your Garden Healthy
A well-maintained garden can enhance your home’s curb appeal and boost your mood. Most plants and flowers need water to survive, but too much water can drown them and prevent them from growing. If the gutters become so clogged that water starts to spill over the side, it can affect the garden beds underneath them. Cleaning the debris out of your gutters can help you sustain your garden by maintaining the right amount of water for your flowers or vegetables.
5. Preserves Your Siding and Interior Walls
Cleaning your gutters can help you take care of your home’s siding and walls. Since you most likely have cracks or gaps in your siding, rainwater has the possibility of soaking through to your interior walls if it overflows from clogged gutters. When you take the debris out of your gutters, you can potentially prevent water stains on your walls and protect the paint quality. This practice can help keep your family safe and avoid potential structural damage, so you can save money and have an increased property value.
What Happens if You Don’t Clean Your Gutters?
A few leaves stuck in your gutters may appear harmless, but they can cause a lot of damage if you don’t deal with them appropriately. Here are some of the ways blocked gutters can influence the quality of your home:
1. Reduction of Property Value
Maintaining your home’s curb appeal is essential to its resale value. If your gutters have debris in them, people passing by may notice it from the front of your house. Damage from rainwater can also reduce the quality of your siding, roofing shingles and foundation, leaving costly repairs for yourself or the next homeowner.
Water that pools under your driveway can also cause the same problems you might experience with your home’s foundation. Besides harming your home’s curb appeal, a cracked driveway also presents a safety hazard for those who walk or drive on it. The rainwater from clogged gutters can wash away your garden mulch and damage the flowers by giving them too much water.
2. Damage to the Roof and Gutters
Since obstructed gutters prevent the flow of water away from your home, moisture can fill their components and collect at the bottom of the roof. As a result, the roof shingles can crack and allow water to seep into the underlayment. In freezing temperatures, ice dams could form on your roof from the pools of water forming and wearing down on the gutters and shingles. You may also find leaks in your home’s ceiling and interior walls.
3. Reduction of Indoor Air Quality and Safety
Leaves and debris that attract rodents and insects can bring these pests into your house through the gutter system. Some disease-carrying pests, such as mice and cockroaches, can spread viruses through their waste. If they grow out of control and infest your home, they can contaminate your food and make you and your family sick.
Water damage can also cause mold to develop inside your walls, insulation and flooring. This microbial growth can make it more challenging for those who suffer from allergies and asthma to breathe, and it can weaken your home’s wooden components.
4. Damage to the Foundation
You may use your basement to store your valuables or provide a place to entertain guests. When water trickles down to the foundation of your home, it can potentially flood your basement. In severe rainstorms, this water leak can destroy your furniture and storage containers.
If your house is on a concrete slab, rainwater can seep into the cracks and weaken your property’s integrity. If your home is on an unstable foundation, it might not pass an inspection if you plan on selling it soon. As a result, you may have to spend significant money to repair it.
How Do Our Gutter and Maintenance Programs Work?
Our team at Scro’s Roofing Company can help ease the burden of cleaning your gutters with our years of expertise and high-quality equipment. If your gutters have become blocked and you’re having difficulty keeping up with them, consider our home maintenance program to keep your roof sturdy and aesthetically appealing.
The Importance of Professional Gutter Maintenance
You may want to clean your gutters instead of paying someone else to do it, but our team can help you safely and efficiently maintain the system to improve your home’s curb appeal. Consider some of the reasons why it may be helpful to hire a professional to get rid of debris:
- Keeps you safe: Normally, you would have to climb on a ladder and use dangerous equipment to repair your gutters. As part of our professional gutter maintenance services, we bring the equipment necessary to take care of any blockages while you remain safely on the ground.
- Saves you time: Cleaning your gutters can take several hours if you don’t have the appropriate equipment. Instead of trying to do it yourself, trust an expert in the roofing industry to quickly and efficiently eliminate debris.
- Gives you peace of mind: Our team will take care of all the necessary steps for cleaning out your gutters so you can have confidence in your home’s safety and aesthetic appeal.
How We Maintain Your Roof and Gutters
A roof is supposed to last a few decades, but if you live in an area that may reduce its life span, you may want to invest in our roof maintenance program. We customize our services according to your property’s unique needs, whether you need us to replace missing roof shingles or repair faulty gutters.
When we arrive on-site, we conduct an inspection and make the necessary repairs. You don’t even have to be home when we’re at your house, but it helps if you’re close to a phone to allow us to tell you if we find anything unusual. We conduct the inspection and repairs on the same visit, saving you money by spending less time at your house.
Benefits of Seamless Gutters
For additional protection against debris obstructions, consider installing seamless gutters. These channels feature one unit for each side of your house instead of multiple components that could form gaps at each connection point. You may appreciate the following benefits of seamless gutters:
- Ease of installation: Components that are easy to set up can save you money when you have them installed by a professional. Sectional gutters can be time consuming to figure out where each piece goes. Seamless gutters are custom-made to fit around your house, so they take much less time and energy to put onto your property.
- Low maintenance: If you don’t install sectional gutters properly, the seams can create gaps that can leak water between them. Since seamless gutters are free from these potential spaces, they most likely won’t clog as much, and they’ll probably require much less cleaning.
- Versatile design: Seamless gutters are available in various colors and materials, so you can choose the product that matches your home’s architectural and design style.
How We Install Our Seamless Gutters
At Scro’s Roofing, we install seamless gutters for residents in the area surrounding Raleigh, North Carolina. Our products are both useful and attractive, enhancing your home’s curb appeal and keeping your property safe from damage. We provide a variety of finishes and sizes for your selection, and our experts install them according to your home’s needs. If you invest in our roof replacement services, we can replace your gutters at the same time.
Along with our seamless gutters, consider installing gutter guards to help prevent debris from building up in the future. Our technicians provide these attachments according to your gutters’ configuration to keep out granules, leaves, nests, twigs and tree bark. We know that high-quality gutters and guards can help prevent further damage to keep you and your family safe.
Contact Us to Clean Out Your Gutters
Our team of professionals can help you get the debris out of your gutters in Raleigh and the surrounding areas. As a family-owned business, we’ll provide you with the same level of care we’d expect for ourselves. For more information about our services, you can contact us online or call 919-551-5104.