Thursday, November 1, 2012

Prepare your eavetrough for winter

Prepare your gutters for winter

This may sound like a weird thing to worry about but gutters or eave trough can cause a lot of problems if they do not function properly.

If you do not inspect your gutters before the weather drops below zero then you could cause damage to your home.

The following is a list of the kind of damage that can happen to your home if your gutters aren’t clean before winter;

The gutters can become full of ice and snow, becoming too heavy and collapse.

Gutters that collapse can swing down breaking windows, damaging siding, decks, railings and landscaping.

People can be hit or injured from falling gutters after they exit a home.

Ice can back up onto the roof, under the shingles and cause leaks inside the home.

Soffits can get backed up with water or ice overflow from the gutters and be damaged beyond repair.

Down spouts can become packed with ice and rupture destroying the pipe.

Ruptured down pipes can allow too much water to be deposited beside the foundation leading to water problems in the basement.

Ruptured down pipes can also cause wood siding to be damaged by water endlessly soaking it.

When gutters become too heavy they can tear down the facia.

The facia can become so saturated with water that it rots or discolours.

The easiest way to avoid this is to inspect your gutters before the weather turns too cold. You need to inspect them after most of the leaves have fallen from the trees or you will be wasting your time.

If you don’t have the ability to do this or you don’t have the equipment or the knowledge to do this then you need to hire a professional. There are plenty of home maintenance companies that will come out and do a yearly inspection of your eave trough system for you.

What you need to be looking for is anything that could restrict the flow of water to the downpipes. All leaves, twigs, dirt and asphalt from your shingles should be removed until the base of the gutters are clean.

Then you should run a little water down the gutters to see if the water makes it all the way down the down pipes on to the lawn. If the water doesn’t make it down the down pipes then you might have to remove the pipe and inspect it for blockage. Sometimes you will have to snake the pipe with a stick or pole to get all the debris out of it.

Caulk any leaks or cracks that you find in the gutters and down pipes. This will help keep water from being saturated all over your siding and will also stop icicles from forming on the bottom side of your eave trough.

If you have eave trough that are extremely hard to get too or are dangerous to clean then you should think about having a leaf guard installed on them. This will prevent any leaves from getting into them in the future saving you the hassle of cleaning them every year.

Rob Abbott
Operations Manager
Village Builders Inc.

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