Four Ways Clogged Gutters Create Water Damage

May 12, 2016

 

Spring is (finally) in the air! And that means that homeowners across the country and in Goshen are creating their “To Do” lists for their annual spring cleaning routine. The last thing you want is another item to add to your list, but there is one item of spring cleaning that shouldn’t be skipped. It’s gutter cleaning.

You may think that clogged gutters are just an ugly nuisance; however, they are much, much more than that. Clogged, malfunctioning and broken gutters can cause both minor and extensive water damage this spring. If you’re not convinced, take a look at these four water damage problems caused by rain gutters.

  1. Roof Damage

If your gutters are clogged with water after a storm, the water will have no choice but to stay put. The standing water will result in a soggy roof. The edge of your roof surface and the underlying materials (usually wood sheeting) can be damaged by prolonged contact with water. After time, the materials weaken and need to be replaced. Water damage in your roof can also lead to water damage ceilings. If the water is left to drip or leak for an extended amount of the time  the damage can reach as far as your ceiling and even walls. Having a water damaged ceiling is not something any homeowner wants to deal with.

  1. Damaged Exteriors

Gutters are designed to pull water away from the home. However, if gutters are plugged with leaves, forgotten baseballs, and dirt, the water will begin to spill over the edge. It will fall onto exterior walls, windows, doors, and other structures. Since these features aren’t designed to undergo excessive water contact, they will begin to rot, warp, and weaken.

  1. Weakened Foundation

Since the foundation of your home supports everything on top, it may be one of the most valuable structures. If your rain gutters aren’t working properly, countless gallons of water may seep into the foundation of your home and ruin it. This can cause your foundation to leak, shift, crack, or even sink in extreme cases. You’ll be left with a massive water damage restoration project that could have been easily prevented.

  1. Slippery Surfaces

Again, with clogged gutters, water is falling in places you don’t expect it to. Your visiting friends and family may be subject to a slippery walkway if your rain gutters aren’t in great condition. Usually, homeowners are primarily concerned with ice (rightfully so), but excessive water is surprisingly slippery and unsafe. Prevent any potential accidents by making sure your gutters are in great working condition.

Cleaning Gutters

Since dirty gutters can create a host of water damage problems, take a look at these simple tips to ensure clean gutters and a damage-free spring.

  • Pre-Clean Gutters. Carefully climb a ladder and simply scoop the leaves, dirt, and other materials out.
  • Check gutter spikes. To confirm that your rain gutters are properly attached, check that all the spikes properly attach into the fascia board and into the rafter behind it. If necessary, invest in new spikes.
  • Check for leaks. Leaks are an obvious contributor to spring water damage. If found, remove the old caulking, dry the area, and apply fresh bead silicon sealing.
  • Ensure rivets are properly attached. During this procedure, check the rivets on the downspout. Use a rivet gun to reattach if they are loose or completely missing.
  • Use a pressure washer. Assuming your gutters have no debris and are properly attached to the house, pressure washing will not hurt them. Following the pressure washing instructions exactly for maximum cleanliness.

Hopefully, now you recognize the importance of clean rain gutters. Varying degrees of water damage can occur if rain gutters are clogged of malfunctioning. However, if you do incur water damage from rain or any other source, Hudson Valley Contracting & DKI in Goshen is your place! We are familiar will all types of water damage and will help you on the road to recovery.

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