You should thoroughly clean your gutters to protect your home from water and moisture damage. A clogged gutter can be responsible for problems such as:
- Basement Leaks
- Foundation Cracks
- Leaking Roofs
- Rotting Wood
- Insect Pests
Your gutters perform a very important job of diverting water away from your home. A clogged gutter is often the culprit behind basement leaks. If a gutter is clogged, water will not drain away from your home and instead accumulate around your home’s foundation. It can then seep into the tiniest cracks and leak into the basement. Clogged gutters can also be causing your home’s foundation to crack and wood to disintegrate. If water is not properly draining away from the foundation it can start to erode and weaken the foundation. In the winter water around the foundation can freeze and cause cracks when the water expands through a process called frost heaving. Many insect pests are attracted by moisture and damp conditions. Keeping the area around your home dry by having a clean gutter divert water away is one of the best ways to keep pests away from your home. Leaking roofs are another problem that is often caused by clogged gutters. When gutters are clogged and water cannot drain through them, water will take the path of least resistance. The path of least resistance is usually seeping directly into the walls and ceilings of your home. Ice dams, when water backs up and freezes over is another common culprit behind leaking roofs in the winter time. As you can see it pays to have your gutters cleaned effectively. You can prevent damage to your foundation, prevent leaks, keep pests away and save on costly repairs by keeping your gutters clear.
How Often Should You Clean Your Gutters?
There is not set amount for how frequently you should clean your gutters. However the National Center for Healthy Housing suggests that homeowners should clean their homes at least two times a year once in the spring and once in the fall. Cleaning your gutters periodically throughout the year is a good way to ensure that your gutters are clear and draining water away from the roof and foundation of your home. Depending on where you live you may need to clean your gutters less frequently or more frequently. For example, a home in a desert environment with sparse vegetation may only require a cleaning once a year. A home in a heavily forested environment with lots of trees and plants may require gutters to be cleaned more than twice a year to be in optimal condition.
When Should You Leave Cleaning Your Gutter to a Professional Gutter Cleaning Company?
If you are physically incapable of climbing up a ladder and walking on the roof it is a good idea to contact a professional to clean the gutters for you. Even if you are able to clean your gutters yourself, if it slippery or snowy outside you may want to hire a licensed and experienced professional who can clean the gutters and fix any problems safely and with no risk of injury to you. Cleaning the gutters can be a time consuming and physical job and if you are not up to it, it is best to leave it to the pros who can do the job safely and effectively to ensure that your home is safe from water and moisture damage.