Fall Gutter Care & Maintenance
Proper Gutter Care and Maintenance. This is the third part of our three part series on exterior home care. Miss the first two? No problem!
Part 1: Roof Care & Maintenance
Ok, let’s talk gutters!
With our beautiful New England fall right around the corner, it means changing leaf color and cooler weather. Now is the time to maintain your gutters, check for leaks, cracks and blockages before old man winter arrives. If these aren’t addressed in a timely manner it can result in problems and costly repairs.
Remember – if you are going to be cleaning the gutters without a professional, take the time to make sure safety is your first and foremost concern!!!
Why gutters anyway?
Gutters are important to the structure of a house. During a rainstorm, the gutters will assist with water runoff from the roof. This protects the windows, doors, siding and yes, also the foundation from water damage. Gutters will also help with potential basement flooding.
Now that we have established why we need them, let’s talk about the importance of cleaning and maintaining your gutters:
Step 1: Clean out debris
It is recommended to use a garden trowel or gloved hand to remove any leaves, sticks and debris. Also, “you should arrange to clean your gutters twice a year. If the gutters are full of leaf debris, pine needles or shingle grit, rainwater will overflow and cascade over the under-eave structures, possibly causing moisture related-damage and algae formation…”- NACHI
If you gutters are blocked going in to the cold winter months, clogged gutters can contribute to ice dams which will result in roof and shingle damage, and even interior leaks.
Step 2: Check for leaks
After the debris is removed, the next step is to check for leaks. With a garden hose rinse the gutters in the direction of the downspout. This will remove any residual material and allow you to check for leaks. If the gutters do start leaking there are a few sealer/patch kits at hardware stores for DIY project. These leaks should be fixed as soon as they are found.
If DIY isn’t for you, or possibly too dangerous, consider hiring a professional. They have the expertise to know exactly what needs to be done. A roofing contractor can fix any potential issue before it’s too late and suggest ways in which to keep them clean. This may entail a gutter system with the ability for screens, bracket systems, one place system or even “in the gutter” system. Talk with a professional today about these options so it will be less maintenance for you and more time with family!
This concludes our 3 part series on Roof, Chimney and Gutter Care for New Hampshire homes. Stay tuned for more! As a NH Home Inspection company, we welcome your questions, comments , and concerns!
If you are in need of a home inspection in the greater Bedford NH area, we’re the one for you! We service all towns in southern NH, including New Boston NH, Weare NH, Goffstown NH.