Many of us don’t think about pesky maintenance tasks such as cleaning the gutters until there is a problem. By the time we realize it, it is often too late. Gutters direct the water away from your home’s foundation, exterior walls, doors and windows. If you fail to clean them up, you are bound to land in serious trouble down the road. But, how do you know when the gutters are due for a cleaning?
In this article, we list the top tell-tale signs that can alert you when your gutters need cleaning.
Your Gutter is Sagging
If there is an excess of debris and water build-up inside your system, it will cause the gutters to sag due to the extra weight. If you find your gutters sloping, check if they are clogged. You may be required to do more than cleaning if you ignore it for a long time. Best to act on it as soon as you notice the first signs.
Accumulation of Debris
Winds and rains are natural carriers of debris such as leaves, twigs and dead bugs into your gutters. This is precisely why you need to routinely clean your gutters multiple times a year to avoid clogging them. If you live in a windy area, you need to be more careful during autumn when the leaves can find a way into your gutters more than ever.
Water is Overflowing
If you notice water spilling over your gutter’s edge, it’s a sign that it could be due to clogging. When the water can’t find a way through the gutter pipes, it tends to spill down the sides of your house. This can lead to permanent foundation damage and weaken the important areas of your home. It’s important to nip this nuisance in the bud to prevent extra home maintenance expenses.
Plants are Growing
If you see plant life sprouting from your gutters, you may be a little late already. Plants are known to trap moisture and turn into a planting mix even if they start decomposing. If any seeds fall into your gutter system, this could become an outlet for them to sprout and grow. Notice the first signs of green popping over the gutter edges or algae accumulation and schedule a cleaning immediately.
Pests and Animals by The Roof
If green stuff has found a way into your gutters, pests and animals are soon to follow. A gutter full of leaves makes for a great home for small pests. Leaves, twigs, nuts, or anything else can easily invite birds, rodents, cats and squirrels to your home. Leave things unattended for too long, and it could escalate into a huge critter problem.
You Don’t Remember the Last Cleaning
Gutters require cleaning multiple times a year depending on where you stay, the weather and other such factors. If your previous gutter cleaning was so long ago that you have a hard time recalling, it’s probably best to schedule one immediately. Hire professional gutter cleaners to take the stress off your shoulders and do a diligent job that you may overlook on your own.
Icicles During the Winters
Icicles may look pretty when the temperatures drop, but they are a warning sign of serious clogs in your gutter. If ice and snow melt from your roof and find a way into your gutters, it can flow over the side. When the temperature drops, the melting ice forms into icicles by re-freezing. They can also put you and your loved ones at risk for injuries when they fall.
Fascia Boards are A Mess
Your fascia board carries all the guttering. Needless to say, it has an important job to do for the safety of your house. If there is a water build-up from backed-up gutters, it can cause rotting of the fascia boards. The longer the debris has clogged your system, the more damaged the boards will get. So, we suggest a routine checkup of your fascia boards to avoid a higher replacement cost in the future.
A Leaking Roof
This is one of the biggest structural problems that you could face if your gutters are not cleaned on time. Blocked or clogged gutters prevent the rainwater from passing through the pipes. This leads to a build-up on your roof, which can eventually leak through into your home. If you don’t act on it well within time, the cost of repairing your roof would cost you much higher.
Cracked Walls or Damaged Brickwork
Blocked gutters for long periods can lead to cracked walls due to overflowing waters. You may also start to notice damage to the brickwork or staining in the walls. The seepage can go into tiny cracks and crevices and weaken the structure in the long run. It is best to be proactive and have your gutter cleaned before things reach this point.
A Change in Weather
It is a good time to get your gutters cleaned when the weather is changing. Every season brings its own set of challenges along with it. It’s best to be prepared for it in advance. Less or more rainfall, either way, will do more good than harm to get your gutters cleaned instead of waiting for a problem to arise.
Puddles Around the Base of Your Home
If you notice puddles around the base of your home or your basement has begun to flood, you know there’s a problem. Clogged gutters can create puddles that can get soaked into the concrete foundation. If left unchecked, you may be staring at huge water damage. Even though you may have an insurance policy that can help you cover the cost of repairs, it’s advisable to prevent the situation from escalating to that stage.
It is critical to get your gutters cleaned periodically. If you fail to do so, you may have to face irreversible damage and replace them entirely, depending on how worn out they are. We hope the above tips can come in handy and help you maintain your gutters all year round.
Feel free to reach out to us in case of any queries!