Ah…fall in Colorado. It’s a beautiful time of year. The aspen leaves are showing signs of yellowing, and the weather is turning crisper as the daylight hours draw shorter.
As wonderful as the fall season is, it’s also a time for conducting a health check on your roof and rain management system, including your gutters and downspouts. With the snow, sleet, hail, and freezing rain that is surely on the way, it’s smart to take action now in preparation for the worst that Mother Nature can serve up.
There are some basic steps you can take to prepare your gutters for fall. A little attention can go a long way in defending your home from damage caused by water leaks, mold, rot, and other results of faulty gutters.
At A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors, we’d rather you detect a problem with your gutters before the colder weather shows up, so you don’t find yourself blindsided by a potentially costly repair at the worst time of the year to need one!
To best prepare your gutters for fall, take these steps.
#1: Perform a Thorough Gutter Cleaning
Maybe you’ve put it off for a few seasons longer than you should have. Maybe this year hasn’t been especially bad for debris accumulation on the roof. Regardless, getting up there to clean your gutters is probably the single most effective thing you can do to protect your home from the upcoming weather.
To do this, follow this routine:
- While wearing thick gloves and a long-sleeve shirt, remove all of the twigs, sticks, leaves, and other debris you can from the gutters and downspouts on your home. Take care not to exert too much pressure, as some gutters and downspouts can easily become separated from their mounting locations.
- Use a garden hose to spray down the insides and outsides of the gutter surfaces. Avoid using a pressure washer, as the force can be enough to damage rain management hardware.
- For extra credit, pour warm water mixed with a mild, environmentally safe detergent down each gutter and downspout.
#2: Inspect the Roof Perimeter for Damages
This is something you can do while you’re performing your gutter cleaning. Look for areas where seams are splitting, corrosion has set in, or joins have become disconnected. It only takes one or two rain management system faults to create a potentially problematic solution when the first heavy rain or snowfall hits.
Remember, your shingles and roof flashing are an important component of your overall rain management system. So, if you notice some degradation or disrepair anywhere on your roof as you clean your gutters, make note of it and take action to have repairs done sooner than later.
#3: Trim Back Encroaching Tree Limbs
One of the most common culprits of gutter and downspout damage is falling debris from overhanging foliage like trees and large shrubs. This is especially true in the case of older or dying trees that become weaker over time.
If you notice tree branches getting progressively closer to your roof, trim them back in anticipation of fall weather. While doing this, be sure to take all the necessary safety precautions like wearing fall protection equipment and working with a partner.
If there are tree branches that are too large for you to manage on your own, call in a tree trimming specialist.
#4: Install Gutter Guards
If you don’t already have gutter guards installed on your home, it might be time to do so while you still have some time this season. Properly installed gutter guards can help to prevent leaves, sticks, and other debris from entering your troughs and downspouts while allowing for water to naturally flow away from the home as it should.
Thankfully, most after-market gutter guard systems can be easily installed using basic hand tools. Some of them even snap on. If you need help selecting the right gutter guard system for your home, don’t hesitate to contact A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors for a little guidance.
#5: Call in the Professionals for Complex Rain Management Issues
We’ve seen it time and time again: homeowners put off having their gutters and downspouts repaired because they just don’t have the time to do it themselves, or they think it’s not that big of a deal.
The truth is that faulty gutters and downspouts are a big deal, and neglecting them over time can lead to expensive damages.
Get ahead of the problem by contacting A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors for a free, no-obligation quote.
Stay safe, and have a great fall season!