During the winter, ice and snow can cause a lot of trouble around your house, yard, and car. One thing it does pretty consistently is damage gutters. If it isn’t the ice dams making water overflow, it’s the heavy snow that weighs down gutters and eventually breaks them apart.
What can you do to help prevent damage before it happens? Gutter cleaning, inspection, repairs, and snow management all work well.
Clean Gutters are Safer
If there is debris and dirt left inside your gutters, ice dams are more likely to form, and melted snow won’t be able to flow down to the ground. This means the water may overflow from the sides of the gutters, creating long icicles, or it will continue freezing inside the gutter to make even larger dams. Both options can lead to broken gutters and leaks. It’s better to help prevent this issue by cleaning your gutters before the first snow fall. Clean gutters allow water to flow unhindered, while gutters with small or large clogs will make it easier for water to pool up and freeze.
Inspect Your Gutter Installation
Besides cleaning the gutters, it’s also important to make sure you look over the construction of the gutters. If they are not stuck on the roof tightly enough, or the installation method is not solid, they may be ripped from the roof by heavy snow.Specifically, you can check if the gutters are held in place by screws or pegs, and if there are snow-proof gutter guards of any kind covering the tops.
Older gutters may have a peg-style installation that is not strong enough to hold up the extra weight of snow. These gutters could crash down the first time you have a large storm, so it’s a good idea to prepare yourself for that possibility and to see what you might be able to do to stop it.
Gutter guards are not always useful against snow, but some of them are built to help keep huge piles of snow out of the gutters. If you have gutter guards already or want to install them, look for snow-proof types that will resist snow.
Take Action after the Snow Falls
You can help your gutters and your roof by taking some steps to help remove the snow from the gutters before it piles up too heavily. A snow rake is one of the simplest methods to use, and you can pull the snow off the roof safely to the ground. Be careful using it though, because you don’t want to accidentally pull down your gutters instead!
Snow may not mix well with gutters, but you’re not completely helpless to protect your home from damage when the winter weather comes around. Take these steps to keep the negative effects of bad weather away.
Need someone to clean them for you? Get a free quote online here.