Great Gutters: A Guide to Fall Maintenance
Updated: Jan 28
The trees are losing their leaves and temperatures are starting to drop. That means it’s time to get your minds IN the gutter and start prepping your home for winter with some good ol’ fashioned gutter maintenance. Cleaning your gutters regularly, recommended twice per year at the end of fall and beginning of spring, is important to avoid damages. A leaky gutter is more than just a minor inconvenience of getting dripped on, or worse, doused when you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time. When gutters get clogged they can build up debris and cause added weight straining your gutter fasteners which may lead to much bigger problems for your home and your wallet down the road.
Issues with gutters tend to be more prevalent in the fall and winter from the increase in rain and snow. One major issue homeowners face is not having enough gutters and downspouts, and not having the sufficient amount can cause strain on those you do have potentially causing them to overflow. Additionally, over time the joints may become improperly sealed or separated. Once the snow starts falling you want to be sure your gutters are clear and working effectively so they do not cause ice dams. Additionally, if you have trees near your home, keeping your gutters cleared of leaves, seeds and other debris is paramount to keeping your home protected from water runoff. As the snow melts, you need gutters to properly direct water flow away from your home avoiding leaks, cracks in wall foundations, and moisture damage to your siding, roof, and elsewhere.
Minor damage to gutters can lead to thousands of dollars in repairs. One of the primary purposes of gutters is to move water away from your home to avoid the water eroding the soil around the foundation. Also, clogged downspouts can create gutters to back up and overflow, causing damage to your siding and roof. Additionally, when water isn’t properly displaced it can lead to basement flooding causing a myriad of issues such as mold and mildew. A good clean gutter system will also protect your driveways, sidewalks, and patios. You want to avoid water buildup on these paved areas so they won’t be shifted or eroded. Last but not least, we’ve all heard the joke that the Minnesota State Bird is the mosquito! Clogged gutters create prime mating grounds for these pesky buggers. While that may not be a huge concern with the dropping temperatures, you’ll certainly want to avoid creating a love shack for them in the spring! The mosquito isn’t the only bird you want to avoid in your gutters, though. Nests from birds, squirrels, and other critters are often found in gutter systems. Many species find the narrow but open design appealing for making their home. Once you evict and re-home your fluffy and feathered friends, consider installing a gutter guard to prevent
future squatters. If you do happen to find a nest in your gutters, please note that federal and state laws protect most wild birds, so please contact your nearest U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service office for advice prior to removing the nest.
Did you recently move into a new home or are just generally wondering if you need a new gutter? As a guide:
Copper rain gutters can last up to 50 years
Aluminum and galvanized steel gutters last up to around 20 years.
If you’ve noticed your gutters are pulling away from the house or have spotted any holes, gaps, rusty spots, sagging, or separating, it’s time to call the gutter experts at Refresh Exteriors. Gutters need to be fitted tightly together to work effectively, and with time gutters can become a real eyesore hurting your home value once it’s time to resell. Finally, if you notice that your fasteners are damaged, it’s a good time to give us a call to inspect and provide the next steps and a free quote.
If you’re wondering how you can proactively protect your gutter from future damages, try installing gutter guards. Your local Minnesota roofing contractor and gutter experts will happily install them. Gutter guards can be a great solution to keeping leaves and twigs from jamming up your gutter system and downspouts. While it is an initial investment they can be a great tool for protecting against gutter damage and minimizing upkeep down the road. If you’re interested in installing gutter guards on your home, give Refresh Exteriors a call for a quote!
Is your gutter in need of repair, cleaning, or gutter installation? Refresh Exteriors is a Minnesota Roofing Company based in Eden Prairie that also specializes in gutter installations and gutter repairs! While cleaning your gutters does not require much technical savvy, it can be a large, dangerous, dirty, and time-consuming job. Why not leave it up to the experts? Give your local Minnesota roofing and gutter specialists a call and we’ll get your home winter ready!