Out of sight should not be out of mind when it comes to home maintenance. Your gutters are the external plumbing of your home, and you ignore them at your peril. Understandably, they can often be overlooked. However, this can be an expensive and stressful mistake. When it comes to gutters, prevention is key. If you keep on top of gutter maintenance then you can avoid these costly pitfalls.
Gutters – The Problem
Gutters serve an essential purpose: to cope with rainfall however heavy, and get it transported away from your home, fast. However, they are prone to filling up with all sorts of debris from leaves, twigs and even the odd dead animal. Once the problem has started it quickly gets out of hand. Moss forms and vegetation can take root, and soon your gutter has a blockage.
- Blocked Gutters – Water Damage
The most obvious problem arising from blocked gutters is water damage. Speed is of the essence when it comes to effective guttering. Any blockage slows down the process and is the source of trouble. The water has to go somewhere so you’ll either get a back up, over your eaves and under the gutters and finding its way in through the roof and ultimately your ceilings, or significant run off down the exterior walls. Once this happens you’re looking at damp finding its way in, potentially saturated foundations, and notable structural damage which is difficult and costly to fix.
- Blocked Gutters – Wood Damage
Whilst gutters are performing their job well, your fascias really don’t see too much water. However, blocked gutters cause the fascias to be exposed to much more water than they are designed for. The result is that they can deteriorate and rot, negatively affecting the look of your home and proving costly to replace.
- Blocked Gutters – Weight Damage
Remember, gutters are not designed to carry great weight and they are only held up by screws and simple brackets. Whilst debris adds some weight, sodden debris and waterlogged gutters puts a weight pressure on the gutter fixings which they weren’t designed for. This can cause them to bend and break, triggering damage to the roof, and being potentially dangerous to anyone walking underneath.
- Blocked Gutters – Animal Damage
Whilst your home doesn’t like blocked gutters, many creatures and critters do. The build up of twigs, leaves and moss prove to be attractive homes for all sorts of British wildlife, from birds, to insects, wasps, and even mice. Removing and cleaning then becomes more of a problem, and blockages are exacerbated.
- Blocked Gutters – Landscape Damage
With blocked gutters heavy rainfall has nowhere to go but is all heading in one direction. The result is a potential deluge splashing down with force in to one area of your path or garden causing erosion and damage.