Although the temperatures in Atlanta will be warm for a while yet, fall is approaching quickly. The changing foliage is always beautiful to see, but as all homeowners know, the falling leaves mean piles of leaves on the yard and clogged gutters. Here are 5 quick steps to prepare your gutters for fall.
5 Quick Steps to Prepare Your Gutters for Fall
Gutters that are clean and in good repair divert rainwater away from the roof and the side of the house. Water that pools on the roof can lead to premature wearing of roofing materials, water leaks, or mold and mildew growth. Water that pools on the ground near the house can lead to foundation problems, water incursion into the basement, or issues with the surrounding landscape.
That’s why it’s important to have your gutters inspected twice per year – once in the spring and at the start of fall. If you live in a home in a heavily wooded area, you may need to have inspections and cleaning once per quarter.
Here are 5 quick steps to prepare your gutters for fall:
- Clean your gutters before fall arrives, or hire someone to clean your gutters. This prevents your gutters from becoming overwhelmed with fall foliage, acorns, pine cones, and branches. When you are cleaning your gutters, it’s possible that, you may encounter nests or pests who have made your gutters a home. Call a professional to deal with animals who have taken up residence in your gutters.
- Flush the gutters with water to thoroughly remove any remaining debris, as well as to identify if there are any cracks or leaks in the system that need to be repaired.
- Inspect the downspouts around the house to make sure that they are not obstructed or damaged. Remove any obstructions you encounter. This will help ensure that water can flow normally without getting backed up.
- Inspect the gutters themselves. Gutters which are cracked, broken, or not mounted securely to the side of the house should be repaired or replaced. Water that pours through is not aimed away from the home, and can cause stains or water damage to the side of the house.
- Consider installing gutter guards, especially if you live in a heavily wooded area. Gutter guards can drastically reduce how frequently you need to clean your gutters throughout the year. Debris can still accumulate, and gutter guards do need routine maintenance, so this may not be a good option for everyone.
How to Clean Gutters
There are many companies who specialize in cleaning gutters. But if you are a weekend DIY warrior, then you might want to know how to clean gutters for your next project before fall arrives.
- Solid extendable ladder
- Trowel or gutter rake
- Sturdy work gloves
- Set up your tarp below the area you want to work on first.
- Set up your ladder. It’s recommended that you have a spotter for safety.
- Put on your work gloves, climb up the ladder, and remove any accumulated debris in the gutter. Drop the debris onto the tarp below to keep your yard tidy. Use a trowel or gutter rake to help remove debris as necessary.
- Work your way around the house, moving the ladder and tarp as needed, until you return to your starting place.
- Grab a hose and flush out the gutters. This will help ensure that all remaining debris is washed out. You’ll also be able to double-check that nothing is caught in your downspouts.
Clearing Clogged Downspouts
If your downspout is clogged, here’s what to do:
- Place the end of the hose into the roof-side end of the downspout.
- Pack a rag or towel around the hose to create a seal.
- Turn on the water to maximum pressure and wait. The clog should usually clear within a few minutes.
- If the clog persists, you may need to use a plumbing snake to manually clear the clog.
Tidal Wave Response
When you prepare your gutters for fall, you reduce the risk of overwhelming gutters and potentially causing water damage. Clogged gutters can easily lead to water damage on roofs and in attics. If you have found water damage in your attic or anywhere else in your home, call Tidal Wave Response. We’re available 24/7 for a free appraisal of damages. Our team will restore your home back to its original state on time and in budget.