How to Keep Your Rain Gutters Flowing Freely: Causes of Clogging and Preventative Measures
One of the most bothersome problems homeowners deal with is overflowing gutters, whether it’s a gradual leak or unexpected downpour that results in the gutters filling up, overflow has the potential to damage a home’s exterior siding, foundation, and landscaping. However, with comprehension of common triggers and straightforward prevention strategies, you can keep your gutters flowing freely all year long.
Accumulated debris is generally the primary culprit that results in clogged gutters and overflow. Shed leaves, pine needles, small branches – all kinds of debris accumulates in gutters if not cleaned out routinely. The good news is debris is also the simplest issue to tackle – it simply involves climbing a ladder or employing an extension instrument to remove debris obstructing the downspout openings. With a goal to clear gutters no less than biannually, more frequently if surrounding trees are abundant, debris can be prevented from piling up and resulting in clogs. Here’s the link to learn more about the awesome product here.
Ice dams are an additional major source of overflow, especially in colder regions. When snow covering a roof melts during daylight hours and refreezes at night, it can form an icy wall along the roofline. This ice dam obstructs water from draining through gutters normally. Instead, water backs up beneath roof shingles and leaks into the residence. The best preventative measure involves ensuring warm air isn’t escaping and thawing snow on the roof’s edge. Checking attic insulation and ventilation, as well as using heated roof rakes to dissolve ice dams from above, can circumvent this problem.
Slope and pitch are critical for proper drainage, yet many older homes have gutters installed incorrectly. Over time, gutters can sag or lose pitch so water doesn’t flow to downspouts properly. Using a level to check slope, and resetting any sections not angled at minimum 1/4 inch per foot toward the downspout, is important. Making sure downspouts extend several feet away from the foundation as well is key to preventing overflow. You can read more on the subject here!
Clogs inside the downspout itself can imprison water up high in the gutter. Inspecting for debris or partial clogs in downspout openings and the downspout conduit, and removing any blockages, permits freely flowing drainage from gutters all the way to the ground. While surveying, also assess downspouts for harm like dents or crushed zones that may retard water discharge. Substituting downspouts if essential maximizes flow.
Through comprehension of frequent triggers like debris, ice dams, improper slope, and downspout obstructions, preventive actions can be undertaken to maintain freely flowing gutters. With a bit of seasonal maintenance including debris removal and ice dam inspection as well as validating correct installation, homeowners can stay dry even when rains are heavy. This page has all the info you need.