Cleaning Your Gutters: Prevent Water Damage By Cleaning Leaves From Your Gutters
Maybe it’s all the pumpkin spiced lattes, but it seems like fall is becoming an increasingly popular time of year. And it’s understandable because those falling leaves look amazing. Unforturtuantly, those leaves can create problems that lead to water damage. When leaves clog your gutters, they allow water and ice to build up that can cause water damage to your home. Keep your home dry this fall by cleaning your gutters.
How Cleaning Leaves From Your Gutters Will Prevent Water Damage
Your gutters are designed to allow rainwater and melting snow to drain off your roof and away from your home. If your gutters are clogged with leaves, water will build up along your roof or even potentially pour over your gutters and pool around your foundation.
Water that builds up in your gutters during fall will freeze as winter comes. This may lead to an ice dam, that forces water and ice underneath roofing shingles. During winter thaws, this can cause water to leak through your roof into your attic or through walls.
A slow leak will allow mold to grow, while a large leak can result in significant water damage to your roof decking, attic rafters, your ceilings, and walls. In most cases, a slow leak will also develop into a larger leak as the repeated freezing and thawing makes the situation worse.
Water that pours over your gutters can also lead to water damage as well. As water pools around your foundation, it can enter your basement a number of ways. Whether it leaks into your basement over walls, through basement windows, or in between cracks, it can cause significant water damage.
Cleaning Your Gutters At Least Once Each Fall to Prevent Water Damage
You should clean leaves and other debris from gutters at least once during the fall to prevent water damage. Even if you don’t have trees on your property, leaves are likely to blow from all around the neighborhood and settle in your gutters. Don’t forget to clean your downspouts as well, as they can become clogged too.
When you are cleaning your gutters, don’t forget to check the integrity of your gutters and roofing as well. Hammer in loose gutter nails or replace them with gutter screws to prevent gutters from falling off over the course of the winter. You should also look for worn out and damaged shingles that may let water in.
If you don’t want to get up on the latter yourself, hire a gutter cleaning service to do the work for you. You may also want to consider having them install gutter guards that prevent debris from building up in your gutters. This will save you time and money in the long run, while still preventing water damage.
In addition to cleaning your gutters, now is a great time to check for signs of water issues. While you are unlikely to miss a major issue like a flood or catastrophic leak, smaller issues could go unnoticed for months.
Look For Signs of Water Damage and Mold in Your Attic and Basement
While finished basements and attics are used more frequently, unfinished spaces are often avoided. Be proactive and check your attic and basement several times a year for signs of water damage or mold growth, especially if you haven’t cleaned your gutters in a while.
In the attic, inspect your chimney and the underside of your roof decking for water stains or leaks. While it may be difficult to access the area due to the pitch of your roof, do your best to inspect for signs of water damage along the edges as well.
Standing water or damp areas are clear signs you have a water issue in the basement, but other common signs of water coming into your basement include efflorescence, musty odors, mold, and stains.
Professional Mold Removal and Water Damage Restoration
As the nation’s #1 network of restoration contractors, Restoration Local will connect you with a mold remediation or water damage contractor in your area. Choose a local contractor now or call 1-888-443-3110 for a free estimate from our on-call restoration company. Our directory includes listings for independent contractors as well as many popular franchises like AdvantaClean, DKI Restoration, Restoration 1, and Steamatic.