The purpose of the gutters or eavestroughing attached to your home is to collect water that flows down the roof. This can be from rain during a storm or when ice or snow has begun to melt. The gutters on a home are the large troughs that are located under the edge of the roof. The eavestrough that is attached to your home will need to be properly maintained to prevent serious issues from occurring.
Gutters that are not properly maintained will show obvious signs of a problem. This will include water flowing over the side if eavestrough is full of debris to leaks if it has rusted. If you have leaks in any of the gutters around your home, then potential damage can occur to the foundation. Leaks can also cause water to freeze and create a slip hazard during winter. Examples of damage to gutters is often posted on social media after a recent storm.
The gutters on your home can develop leaks in many different areas. One place is the eavestrough or at connection points. Separate pieces of eave are connected together and attached to a downspout running to the ground. If the pieces are not properly connected, then leaking can occur. If you want to check for leaks, then run water from a garden hose in the trough. Water should run down the trough and then into the downspout. You will see immediately if there is any leaking in the eavestrough.
Simple repairs can be made to your eavestrough if there is a leak. The easiest way to repair holes in the trough is to apply a patch. This can be done using silicone caulk and a piece of aluminum. You can also use roofing tar to adhere a patch to the trough. If leaking occurs at a connection point, then you can use caulk to seal any open seams.
This is the number one way to maintain the integrity of your gutters. Leaves and debris will collect in a trough if they do not have any type of guard or cover. This means you need to periodically clean out the eavestrough each season. You will typically do this once in the spring, once in the summer, twice in the fall. Additional cleaning is needed if you live in an area with a lot of trees. The best way to clean out an eavestrough is to use a garden spade. Debris can easily be scooped out and placed in a bucket. You may then run water into the gutter to wash any excess debris to the downspout.
Prevent leaves and debris from getting in your gutters by installing gutter guards. These are screens that will keep out debris, such as leaves. However, they often do not keep out small particles coming off the shingles. This means you need to check for blockages to the downspout when cleaning out the eavestroughing on your home. If you see that a downspout is plugged, then it can be cleaned out with a long metal rod.
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