Owning a home is a big responsibility, requiring a lot of time and money to maintain it’s aesthetic and integrity. Important aspects of our homes include electric, plumbing, HVAC systems, gas, and so on. However, the unsung hero of our home is none other than the gutter system. Here are just a few reasons why gutters, as well as their maintenance and upkeep, are so crucial to your home.
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Gutters Direct Water Away from the Home
When it rains, water flows off the roof, through the gutters, and down the downspout. The gutter system’s features direct water away from the foundation of the home out into the yard or toward the sewage drain. Directing water away from the house is a key role of the gutter system and an incredibly important job. When gutters are not working efficiently, it can cause water pooling at the foundation of the home.
For the water to flow away from the home, the gutters must be clear of debris buildups, such as leaves, twigs, and dander. When the gutters are clogged with debris, water cannot flow through the gutter system and out the downspouts. Instead, water will flow over the gutters and down the siding of the home. Since the water isn’t flowing through the proper channels, it will buildup in areas with the potential to cause serious damage to various areas of the home.
Gutters Prevent Damage and Expensive Repairs
Gutters that work correctly will protect the home from potential water damage. However, if water pools around the foundation of the home, a plethora of things can happen. First, water will start seeping into the basement, causing leaks and water spots. As the amount of moisture increases, so does the risk of rust, mold, and rot. When there are clogs in the gutter system and water overflows, the siding of the home can peel, and water can leak into the ceilings and walls. Water can also cause cracks in the foundation, which is incredibly expensive to repair, potentially adding up to thousands of dollars.
With enough buildup combined with the weight of water, the gutters can crack and tear the fascia away from the roof, compromising the gutter system as a whole. Sometimes, homeowners can get away with replacing a section of the gutter system, but often, they must install an entirely new system.
Gutters Require Upkeep and Maintenance
Homes come with a long list of chores, and one very important thing on this list is cleaning the gutters. Clearing out leaves, twigs, and other debris is what decreases the risks associated with clogged and damaged gutters.
Unfortunately, many homeowners fail to make this a priority. Rather than cleaning the gutter system every three to four months, they put it off all year. Although a lot of homeowners do a good job of keeping up with the gutters, others wait until it is too late, and damage has already occurred.
Gutter Systems are Investments
With proper maintenance, a home’s gutter system can sustain years of weather conditions. However, when it comes time to upgrade your gutter system, whether because of damage or age, you should look at it like any other home renovation: an investment.
Homebuyers should pay closer attention to gutters because a high-quality system is a valuable part of any home. Although gutters do not necessarily increase the resale value of a home, homebuyers do expect them to be in good condition; otherwise, they will pay less or walk away altogether.
When purchasing a new gutter system, explore all the options, including materials, brands, and other features like downspouts and gutter guards. A relatively new option is maintenance-free gutters. Several companies across the country specialize in creating gutters that require no upkeep. Homeowners can avoid cleaning out leaves, sticks, and other debris with these specially designed gutters. An alternative to maintenance-free gutters are gutter guards, which help limit the amount of necessary maintenance.
Gutter systems are a key player in protecting the home from water damage and other weather-related threats. Homeowners must remember the importance of gutter upkeep and recognizing when it is time to upgrade their homes’ gutter systems.