As a homeowner, you have many responsibilities for your home. Proper home care keeps it in the best condition possible. Taking proactive measures is the best way to maintain its value and keep it looking great.
Cleaning out your gutters isn’t a fun chore, but it’s a necessary one. The gutters direct water runoff away from your home, preventing water damage and other concerns. When they become clogged with leaves, sticks and other debris, they won’t do their job correctly.
Whether you’re a new homeowner or are just looking for the best ways to maintain your home, check out this quick guide on how to care for your gutters. If you’re wondering if gutters can be cleaned in the winter or what happens if you never clean your gutters, we have the answers.
How Do You Know if Your Gutters Need Cleaning?
Even if you’ve recently cleaned your gutters, do you know how long you should wait until you do it again?
Look for signs that indicate you need to clean your gutters. Because of the vital role they play in keeping your home in good condition, you should clean out your gutters if you notice any of these signs:
- Standing water inside the gutters or in the grass or flowerbeds near your home
- Birds and insects around the roof
- Sagging gutters
- Stained siding
When your gutters become too clogged, the standing water and gunk mixed with the water can serve as a food source for birds and insects. The birds are harmless, but the wrong insects can become pests.
Sagging occurs when too much buildup weighs down the gutter. While they are still secured to your home, soggy leaves and other debris become heavy and pull them down.
A gutter’s purpose is to direct water away from the sides of your home. If you notice stains on the siding, it may be water staining from runoff from the roof.
What Is the Best Time of Year to Clean Gutters?
We recommend you clean out your gutters two times each year to keep them working as they should. Late fall or early winter and early spring are ideal times of the year to give your gutters a cleaning.
In the fall, it’s best to wait until as many leaves have fallen as possible. Leaves are the most common natural element that clogs gutters. The longer you wait, the better! If you’re experiencing a warmer winter, you can even wait until this season to get the job done.
After the winter has cleared and the weather is finally returning to higher temperatures, it’s time to clean the gutters again. Early spring is an excellent time to do this chore before the weather becomes more unpredictable. Rain, thunderstorms and other natural elements can prevent you from getting the job done later in the spring and throughout the summer.
Why Is It Necessary to Clean Your Gutters?
If you never clean out your gutters, you risk a variety of adverse effects on your home.
Due to the standing water, mold can grow on the gutters themselves and can even make its way inside if the roof is older. This water also draws pests, which can become a real nuisance and may even cause damage if they make nests close by.
The backed-up water can also leak into your home through the roof and basement. When the gutters don’t drain properly, water can pool close to the foundation of your home. Cracks in the foundation can form from this almost-constant presence of water.
What Damage Can Clogged Gutters Cause?
If you notice any of the signs of clogged gutters, you’ll want to clear them out as soon as you can. Leaving them full of leaves, branches and other debris can damage various parts of your home and property.
The standing water near the home’s foundation can cause significant damage. Fixing the foundation is a costly and intrusive project since cracks in the foundation from the water can compromise the entire structure. The water on the ground can also damage the landscape, from shifting soil to overwatered plants.
Water damage near the roof and siding can also be severe. Wood can rot and compromise the entire home’s structure. The runoff and leaks can affect several parts of your home.
Finally, bug infestations can range from a nuisance to a pressing concern. Insects like stink bugs are annoying, but they are not harmful. However, if termites or wasps infest your home instead, they can significantly damage its structure.
When you want to leave the job of clearing your gutters to a professional, choose Sunshine Contracting Corp. With a wide range of services, we can help keep your home in the best condition possible. Schedule a free in-home consultation or contact us today to learn more.