Like it or not, fall is fast approaching.  With the changing temperatures and falling leaves will also come the need to check and clean your gutters.

Gutters and downspouts are essential parts of your roofing system.  They drain water from the roof, and discard it away from the house.  Clogged, damaged, or compromised gutters and downspouts can cause water to pool, resulting in:

  • Water Damage: this includes basement flooding and damage to the foundation
  • Mold/Mildew: which results from dead leaves decomposing
  • Insects: mosquitoes and termites are drawn to moisture, and to your home
  • Roof Damage: water has no place to go and pools on the roof
  • “Waterfalls”: water does not drain, and excess water falls from your gutters like a waterfall
  • Broken Gutters: the extra weight can cause gutters to tear away from the home

So, how do gutters and downspouts get clogged in the first place?  Leaves and pine needles are often major culprits.  They enter the gutter and do not wash or blow away on their own. Dirt, seeds, “helicopters”, etc easily make their way into the gutter system.  Birds and rodents can also cause problems. Gutters can be seen as a safe place to hide from predators!

Experts recommend cleaning your gutters at least twice a year—including in the fall after the leaves have fallen.  If you have pine trees near your home, that number can jump to a minimum of four times a year to prevent damage.

What are your options for gutter cleaning?

  • Do it yourself!
    • Be sure you are comfortable on a ladder, and that you have the time to commit
    • In addition to cleaning out debris, remember to have a spray bottle handy with bleach solution to kill any mold/mildew that you come across
    • Be sure to dispose of all debris—debris left around the home can attract animals and bugs, as well as damage your landscaping
  • Hire a professional
    • The price ranges depending on the size and complexity of your roofing system, as well as the number of stories of your home.
    • Be sure that any professional is insured
    • Check out reviews in advance: sites like Angie’s List and the Better Business Bureau provide great information

You can also consider installing gutter screens, which will greatly reduce the need to clean your gutters in the future.  Styles vary, with some keeping out large debris like leaves, and other micromesh styles keeping out pine needles and even tiny particles while still allowing water to easily flow though.

-gutter screen with micromesh-

Gutter Screens

If you are considering gutter screens, we can help.  Call or contact us today for a free estimate.