Gutters are normally the part of your home that remains unimportant. However, your home’s rain gutters are vital to the health of your home. If you don’t have gutters, you’re looking at a plethora of problems, which can be costly and serious. Fail to keep up with its regular maintenance? Even more problems.
Unfortunately, gutters are usually overlooked by many homeowners, but they shouldn’t be. See why gutters and proper gutter maintenance is so important.
Seamless gutters are typically out of sight and out of mind for most homeowners, when in fact they are one of the most important safeguards against water damage to a home. If not controlled and redirected by a properly installed and maintained seamless gutter system, water will wreak havoc on everything from the fascia board to the foundation. No matter the age of your home, a free-flowing gutter system offers protection for many areas.
- Basement and foundation. Water that is not directed away from a home leads to serious problems such as basement flooding, ruined walls, and mold and mildew growth. Once water finds the weak spot in a foundation, the pressure can cause a foundation wall to buckle and crack.
- Siding. Clogged or improperly installed gutters can allow water to run over siding, causing rot behind the panels and stains and mold growth on them.
- Landscaping. Water from overflowing gutters erodes the surrounding landscape, ruining flowers, shrubs and trees and allowing topsoil to be washed away.
- Concrete and masonry. As water flows over concrete, it begins dissolving the minerals within it and eventually causes cracks. Settling and cracking of sidewalks, patios and driveways, and water staining on brick and stone masonry, can all be prevented with a quality gutter system.
- Insects. Standing water in clogged gutters is the perfect environment for mosquitoes and other insect populations to flourish. Keep insects at bay with free-flowing gutters.
- Soffit and fascia. Wood fascia and soffits which become saturated by overflowing gutters can quickly rot, putting the rest of the roof at risk.
- Windows and doors. Water that spills over the gutter edge may drip onto window frames and doors. Eventually this water contact will cause these features to rot, warp and weaken.
What exactly does Gutters Do?
Gutters have one job and one job only: to divert water away from your home. Heavy rains can wreak havoc on your home, especially your siding, windows, doors, and foundation. Without gutters, you could wind up with a long list of serious and costly damages. Water will pool around the foundation of your home, seep into areas it shouldn’t, and cause extensive water damage issues.
Your home’s gutters protect the foundation of your home, prevent erosion, protect your landscaping, and prevent basement flooding. They will prevent staining to the exterior of your home, mitigate paint damage, and stop mold and mildew growth.
Prevent Home Damage with Regular Rain Gutter Maintenance
It’s not enough to just have rain gutters on your home. Gutters need to be cleaned and maintained regularly, in order to ensure they are working properly.
A proper gutter system should be free of holes and gaps and should be pitched properly towards your downspouts. You’ll also want to ensure your gutters aren’t pulling away from the house. If you do notice your gutters sagging or pulling away from your home, this could either be due to clogged gutters or faulty internal hangers. Lastly, a proper gutter system will include downspouts that are free of debris and set 3-5 feet away from the base of your home.
The biggest reason gutters fail to protect your home is because of clogs. Leaves, shingle grit, pine needles and other debris can cause your gutters to clog, preventing water from diverting away from your home. Over time, water can overflow onto your soffit and fascia, back up onto your roof, and pool around the base of your home. It’s almost like not having any gutters at all!