Most homeowners care a lot about what it looks like both inside and outside of their houses. Some peg themselves as “neat freaks”, content to do whatever it takes to keep dirt and clutter away from their home, even if that means constant vacuuming, dusting, window washing, or leaf raking. Others are a little less particular, cleaning when it becomes absolutely necessary. And then there are those in the middle, the ones who certainly keep a neat home but aren’t obsessive about it.
Whichever category you fall into, it’s important to remember that some cleaning tasks are more essential than others, and among those tasks are jobs that could make a huge difference in the condition of your home. While it’s important to clean the bathrooms and sweep the sidewalks, things like keeping your gutters and downpipes free of debris are ultra-essential to protecting your home.
What does a gutter system do?
First, it’s important to understand how your gutters and downpipes function and what role they play.
In short, gutters tunnel rainwater off your roof through downpipes and away from your home. The gutters attach to the edge of the eaves on your roof and the downpipes allow the water in the gutters to travel downwards from the roof to the ground. An “elbow” attaches onto the downspout and leads water away from your home.
Problems caused by debris
When gutters are clogged with debris, the water cannot flow properly from the roof to the ground, which means it will not be allowed to travel away from your home, potentially resulting in damage to your foundation due to flooding. This is the most common problem most homeowners face when they have failed to keep their gutters and downpipes free of debris.
However, debris in your gutters can cause other issues, too, including during the dry weather when rain and other precipitation is rare. Specifically, when leaves, twigs, papers, and other items end up in your gutters (often due to wind or simply because leaves are falling in the autumn), this collection of debris can end up being a fire hazard. Often, homeowners recognize the water hazard but not the risk of fire brought on by clogged gutters, so they forget about scheduling a gutter cleaning during the driest seasons of the year.
Why clean your gutters?
Though it’s obvious that gutters should be cleaned if they are clogged, here’s a more specific list of the benefits offered by debris-free gutters.
- Clean gutters redirect rainwater from you home. Clogged gutters can cause water to enter your home.
- Moisture and condensation from windows and windowsills is minimized when gutters are clean
- Exterior walls remain in better condition because the gutters protect them from heavy rain
- Clogged gutters prevent water from moving off the roof, potentially causing damage such as roof rot. Water on the roof can also seep into your home and weaken the roof’s construction, causing the need for a gutter replacement sooner.
- When the weight of debris causes a gap in your gutter system, your exterior walls can suffer damage.as can the soffits protecting your roof.
- When downpipes are clogged, water that enters the basement can cause foundation damage, cracks in your drywall, floor damage/uneven flooring, loss of physical property (things stored in your basement, etc.), and more.
- Gutters clogged with leaves and other debris are nirvana for animals, birds, and insects. Squirrels and other vermin can then access your attic, causing further damage and costing lots of money for extermination. Also, standing water in gutters can be a breeding ground for mosquitos and other pests you’d rather not have around.
Hiring a professional gutter cleaning service
Quite obviously, regular gutter cleaning makes sense. Some homeowners attempt to clean their gutters and downpipes themselves, which is certainly an option. But because such cleaning services are affordable, it often makes more sense to hire a gutter company to take care of this job, which can be arduous and also demands plenty of climbing and other physical exertion.
At Advantage Gutter, we’re available to clean your gutters all year long, recognizing that hazards occur in both the rainy and dry season. You can schedule an individual appointment with us or choose an option that includes regular annual or semi-annual cleaning. For more information, including pricing, call Advantage at 604-514-9886.