Cleaning your gutters for your home should be part of the spring-cleaning process. Spring is a good time to clean out your gutters and prepare for the season. You can remove debris and buildup that might cause problems, as well as determine if there are any leaks or holes. You can prolong the life of your gutter system by performing regular maintenance, and you can avoid costly repairs. In this article, we will discuss five of the most common gutter Issues you may encounter when it comes to spring.
During the winter months, snow and ice add to the weight of the fascia, and it becomes heavier. The added weight can cause the gutter system to separate and to crack. There is a possibility that these gutters may need to be reattached and secured with new screws if this occurs. If you notice small cracks or holes use waterproof caulk or sealant for repairs. If you find large cracks or holes, it would best to replace the gutter.
It is recommended that gutters are routinely cleaned. As the weather warms, it will bring pine needles, twigs, leaves, and other debris that could cause your system to clog. You can try to avoid this problem simply by maintaining routine gutter cleanings. It is possible to use a leaf blower or a vacuum to clean out clogged areas when the materials are dry, but if you have wet materials, you will need to use gloves to remove the debris from your gutters.
When you experience a clogged downspout, you may have debris blocking the drain or ice and snow that has not been melted. A garden hose can be used to resolve this issue. The hose can be fed through the opening, and by flushing out the downspout it should solve any issues associated with the possible clog.
It is possible for gutters to bend, separate, and buckle. Overhanging trees, rain, and strong winds can cause damage to gutters. Crushed or bent gutters can be a little bit more difficult to fix than separated or cracked ones. In this situation, you will need to hire gutter professionals to replace the damaged areas.
It is imperative that we pay attention to the critters living in our backyard. Your gutter system could be inhabited by animals such as birds, bugs, squirrels, and rodents. If you have insects in your gutters, flushing them out is an easy fix, but for birds and other animals, you might need to gently remove them. Avoid using cleaners or poisons as they can damage your gutters. They can also contaminate your yard since water drains from your gutters.
As a homeowner, it's essential to understand the importance of maintaining clean, functional gutter systems. Damaged or clogged gutters can cause roof leaks and significant structural issues.
When selecting the type of gutters to buy, most homeowners struggle to decide between seamless and non-seamless gutters. Both achieve the same purpose but have different operation methods.
Let’s compare the two to help you make an informed decision.
What are Non-Seamless Gutters?
Non-seamless gutters are available as sections that require assembly. During installation, the units get connected and the joints sealed or soldered.
The different materials used to make these gutters include copper, steel, vinyl, and aluminum. Steel gutters are most suitable for areas with extreme weather conditions due to steel's resilience. However, steel is heavier than the other materials, so there's a need for additional reinforcement, and it can rust in high humidity.
Copper and aluminum gutters are sturdy and resistant to rust. Most people who use vinyl gutters prefer them as they are easy to install, light, and resistant to rust. They are, however, less durable than the other materials.
Additionally, vinyl gutters are unsuitable in areas with very high temperatures and require regular maintenance to prevent clogging.
Seamless gutters have no joints or seams except on corners and downspouts. They are available in the same materials as non-seamless gutters but not in sections that require assembly.
Seamless gutters come as one long piece cut based on the house's dimensions before installation. This design minimizes leaking, is more robust than non-seamless gutters, and has a lower chance of clogging.
Main Differences between Seamless and Non-Seamless Gutters
· InstallationSeamless gutters require professional installation. The measurements need to be accurate since the drains are in one piece. The material sheets require a specific roll-forming machine that cuts them at your home.
Non-seamless gutters are easier to install as the pieces fit into each other. It's possible to DIY the installation, or you can get help from a handyperson with basic construction knowledge.
· Maintenance and DurabilityNon-seamless gutters are easy to install but require regular maintenance to seal gaps in the connection points. They also break more often, driving up the repair and gutter replacement costs.
Seamless gutters have no joints and are; therefore, maintenance is cheaper and more accessible. However, in case there’s damage, you’ll have to replace the entire gutter since it’s not possible to isolate one section.
· LeakagesThe corners and downspouts are the only points where there's a chance of leakage in seamless gutters. They are not resistant to leakages, but there's less likelihood than non-seamless gutters.
Which is the Best Option?
The choice between seamless and non-seamless gutters comes down to your specific needs. Most homeowners prefer seamless gutters because they have minimal leakages.
Over time, non-seamless gutters degrade and wear, especially at the joints, even when installed by professionals. Additionally, seams at the bottom allow debris to collect and clog the gutters. Water ends up backing up, causing flooding or overflow.
Seamless gutters are easy to clean, maintain and they enhance your home's curb appeal. They are excellent for areas that experience heavy rain and homes with many tall trees. Although expensive to buy and install, the benefits outweigh the initial cost.
It’s always best to get professional assistance for gutter replacement, maintenance, or installation. Get in touch with experts from a Gutter Company Colorado Springs, and rest assured of quality services regardless of your choice between seamless and non-seamless gutters.
What Are Gutter Guards?
According to Labor Panes, they are also known as gutter screens, covers, or helmets. Their placing is over the tops of your gutters to prevent debris from entering the gutters. They also allow rainwater to drain away from your house. Types of gutter guards include metal screens, micro-mesh, reverse curve and slit guards, and sponge guards.
Advantages of having gutter guards include:
Why Is Cleaning Them Necessary?
Gutter guards do not guarantee you will never clean your gutters again. However, they reduce the frequency of cleaning them. They also lower the risk of damage to your home because of clogged drains and sitting water.
Even with gutter rails and guards, your gutter can still get dirty. Leaves, mud, and other heavy muck can clog them. Too much clogging can lead to their bending or, in other cases, complete detachment from your house.
Gutter replacement Colorado Springs can come in hand if your gutters are beyond repair Even with proper installation, it's important to clean both the channels and their guards at least twice every year. Especially in a two-story home, cleaning the gutters is not easy.
Gutters reduce the amount of crud and debris that gets into the channels. Gutters also catch roof runoff, twigs, and other outdoor grime. They protect your home by directing rainwater away from your house.
However, they cannot keep out smaller debris such as insects, seeds, and smaller pieces of dirt. The method to clear the gutter depends on your home's gutter guard system. This is according to Mr. Handy Man.
Brush and foam guards also get dirty over time. Leaves and debris do not automatically bounce off and fall to the ground for brush guards. Most of them get caught in the brush, eventually clogging it.
General and frequent cleaning is therefore necessary once in a while. Sectional cleaning of the foam guards is essential because they also collect debris along the edges. Mesh guards are the easiest to clean and put back in position.
Gutter guards are more challenging to clean because they have stronger secure locks, making it harder to lift and lean below them. Though they are the most durable guards, you should leave their cleaning to professionals, reducing the risk of breaking their covers.
Easy steps for cleaning gutter guards
Only attempt gutter cleaning if you have adequate experience cleaning gutters and you are comfortable working with heights. Angi advises that if your home has more than one story, consider hiring professionals to do the job.
Here are easy steps if you want to give it a go:
Do you love the look of your home encrusted in ice? It kind of gives it a fairy-tale glimmer, especially when the sun comes out.
But danger lurks in the beauty. Ice dams on your roof can damage your home and icicles hanging from your eaves can fall and injure people. These issues can even cause respiratory distress in the people that live there!
How are ice dams so dangerous and what can you do to prevent and remove them? Read on to find out!
Why Are Ice Dams Dangerous?
Is there a lot of snow piled on your roof? You need to watch out for ice dams.
As the snow deepens on top of your roof, the upper layers act as insulation. The warmth from your home can warm the lower layers enough that the snow melts and begins to run down your roof.
As it nears the edge of the roof, it can get cold enough to refreeze and start building an ice dam. This is particularly likely to happen if your gutters are blocked or broken because the water can’t flow away easily. This is a prime reason why gutter repair is crucial in the fall.
As the dam forms, new water and snow begin to pile up behind it, creating a small pool on your roof. If that water sits there long enough, it can seep down through the roof and start causing damage to your home.
In addition to the structural damage, the dark, moist conditions are perfect for mold to grow. Leave mold alone for a few days and you’ll have a colony large enough to cause respiratory issues for those breathing the air in your house.
How to Prevent Ice Dams
There are a few ways you can prevent ice dams. One of the easiest is to have a gutter repair company clean and inspect your gutters before the first snowfall. This will help ensure the water drains away like it is supposed to.
Since warm air coming up through your roof is a major culprit, installing extra attic insulation can help keep the snow from melting. This method is more expensive but can be worth it if you are having a lot of problems. You can also include attic ventilation to keep the area cooler.
When the snow falls, head out with a rake and pull the snow off about 3 - 4 feet up from your eaves. Alternatively, you can install heated cables to warm the eaves.
How to Remove Ice Dams
If the ice dam has already formed, you can remove it with calcium chloride (not rock salt which is bad for your roof and vegetation). Place pantyhose or tube socks filled with calcium chloride to create channels through the snow that will allow water to run down to your gutters.
You can also break up the ice dam by hacking at it. However, this method is dangerous and you can potentially damage your roof.
Keeping Your Home Safe This Winter
Never underestimate the danger of ice dams and icicles. They might be beautiful, but they are dangerous to both you and the structure of your home.
If you need help with ice dams or prepping your home for winter, don’t hesitate to reach out to us!
The harsh snow and ice of winter can cause serious damage to your gutters. Ice and snow can build up in your gutters and cause them freeze and break or create an ice dam.
Gutter repair and replacement in the winter can be costly and dangerous, so you want to do everything in your power to stop damage from happening.
A few simple preventative measures can reduce the likelihood of your gutters being damaged in the winter.
Clear Your Downspouts and Rain Chains Before Winter
One of the best ways you can protect your gutters going into winter is thoroughly clean them before the first snowfall.
Remove all the built-up debris and blockage from your gutter troughs, downspouts, and rain chains in the fall.
This allows the water to flow freely through your gutters and reduces the risk of gutter damage in the winter.
Reinforce Your Gutters
Gutters that sag or hang off the side of your roof are at a higher risk of being damaged during the winter months.
If you don't fix sagging gutters before winter, they may fall off your house due to the weight of the snow, and you'll be stuck paying for gutter replacement.
Reinforcing your gutters lowers the chance of ice building up between your home and gutters, which also reduces the risk of roof damage in the winter.
You can try to reinforce your gutters by yourself, but that isn't recommended. Climbing on the roof to reinforce your gutters is dangerous, and it is always safer to consult an expert.
Install Gutter Guards
Installing gutter guards is one of the easiest ways you can prevent gutter damage from snow.
Gutter guards go on top of your gutters and prevent debris from getting in them. Gutter guards don't prevent 100% of debris from entering your gutters, but they prevent a lot of debris from blocking gutters.
The less debris in your gutters, the easier it is for water to move through your gutters and not freeze inside them.
Add a Warming Cable
Adding a warming cable to the edge of your roof or on your gutter guard helps control the temperature of your roof and gutters.
A warming cable heats snow up, so it turns back into water and runs smoothly through your gutters. It greatly decreases the risk of water freezing in your gutters and damaging them.
Trim Nearby Trees
One of the most overlooked ways to prevent gutter damage in the winter is to trim nearby trees.
Not only will it reduce the amount of debris in your gutters, but it will also reduce the risk of excess heavy snow landing on your gutters and damaging them.
Trim any branches that are near your roof and gutters in the fall before the first snowfall. Otherwise, you run the risk of built-up snow falling off your tree onto your gutters.
[Image 1: https://www.pexels.com/photo/brown-wooden-house-during-snow-950058/]
[Image 2: https://www.pexels.com/photo/turned-on-clear-light-bulbs-818760/]
[Image 3: https://www.pexels.com/photo/brown-house-near-pine-trees-covered-with-snow-754268/]