Cleaning your gutters at least once a year (if not more) can help you to maintain your roof and can prevent costly water damage to your house. In fact, many roofing contractors offer gutter cleaning services as a way of preventing roofing problems. Knowing how your gutters affect your roof maintenance and how to prevent roofing problems by maintaining your gutters will help you protect your property from water damage throughout the year.
Backed Up Gutters Cause Big Problems
Clogged gutters may sound like a minor issue, but this minor problem can lead to major water damage and even dreaded winter ice dams. When rain falls on your roof, it runs down the shingling, over the eaves and into the gutters. If they’re working properly, the gutters of your home carry the water away from the roof, through the downspout and ultimately away from your property.
When your gutters become clogged, water can run over the edge of the gutters without ever reaching the downspout. This can cause water to back up onto the eaves. When this happens when temperatures outside are below freezing, this problem is called an ice dam.
Bad clogs caused by leaves and debris can trap water on your roof if the pile of debris extends back up to the roofing material. This can lead to extensive water damage, wood rot, roof leaks and more. The solution to this problem is to clean the gutters annually or more often, depending on how much debris collects in the gutters throughout the course of a single year.
Gutter Cleaning Process
To clean your gutters, use a ladder to get access to the inside of the gutters. Use a trowel to scoop debris out of the gutters and into a bucket. Wearing work gloves with latex gloves underneath will help keep your hands warm and dry during this process. If your downspout has drainage problems, use a plumber’s auger to clear any clogs out of the system, then flush the downspout with water from a hose.
Preventative measures can keep debris from clogging your gutters. Trim back any branches hanging over the top of your house. Install a guard over your gutters to prevent debris from collecting inside the gutters. Check your roof periodically for any debris (like dead tree branches) that may be hanging over the eaves. Remove debris immediately.
For more information about how to improve your home’s drainage and maintain your gutters, speak with a knowledgeable roofing contractor like Darr Roofing today.